The New Times (Kigali)

Rwanda: Gasabo Urges Green Party to Follow Registration Procedures

The Public Notary of Gasabo District, City of Kigali, has called on the members of the green party to comply with the legal provisions for political parties that seek registration.

The Green party held its founding congress last week, however, not all the legal requirements were met. One requirement the Green party failed to meet was related to the signatories of the statute.

"The number of signatories to any political organization's statute shall be at least two hundred (200) from the whole country including at least five (5) persons from each District." Reads in part article 3 of the Organic Law governing Political Organisations and Politicians in Rwanda.

"Unfortunately they failed to get the required number of people from five districts," Jeanne d'Arc Nyirabihogo, the Gasabo District public notary told The New Times yesterday.

While the party had the 200 signatures, they lacked countrywide representation with five districts not meeting the minimum required numbers.

According to Nyirabihogo, there is the example of representation of Kayonza, Burera and more other 3 districts where they did not get the required number of five persons for the founding congress.

"Much later, other people showed up claiming to represent Kayonza but when we cross checked their national identification, we found out that they are actually from Kigali, so I could not consider those as well."

Nyirabihogo further pointed out other irregularities during the congress. By law for parties to register as a party they are required to collect signatures of their members and during the founding congress and the public notary is required to verify the signatures to see whether they match with the individual identity.

"We encountered cases where some people showed up without their national identification. We couldn't consider them because we had no proof that they are the rightful individuals," she said.

The notary's job is key process in registration of parties and Nyirabihogo urged the Green party to comply with the law.

Among other requirements, the parties are required to submit three copies of their statutes certified by the public notary which statutes include the signatories of the founding members.

When asked about the next step, Nyirabihogo said, "it is up to the party members, if they want to fulfil the requirements and convene another meeting (Founding Congress), I am willing to support them, cross check again their identities and certify their document".

The green party has been marred by internal wrangles and weakness that saw the party split and unable to build a membership base.

In 2010, the group failed to register due to controversies within the party. The Kimironko-based organisation's founder is Frank Habineza and attempts to contact him for a comment were futile by press time.

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