A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words -A Photo Essay On Family Rule In Rwanda


Madam Jeannette Nyiramongi Kagame leading Chief Justice, Senate President, Speaker of Parliament and Prime Minister into Parliamentary Chambers

It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words — an English idiom referring to the notion that a complex idea can be conveyed with just a single still image more effectively than a description does.

In Rwanda, pictures do indeed convey more effectively than a description would, how the Kagames have captured the Rwandan state. Looking at the images presented here, there can be no doubt that contemporary Rwanda exemplifies not only personal rule — but also family rule that is now the embodiment of the country’s political system.

The Kagames should change the Rwandan constitution by amending Article 117 which reads “The Cabinet is accountable to the President of the Republic and the Parliament.” The new article should include Madam Jeannette Nyiramongi Kagame, who has literally become co-ruler of Rwanda alongside her husband President Paul Kagame.

She now actively and directly interacts with cabinet ministers — in some cases with even Chief Justice, Senate President, Speaker of Parliament, and Prime Minister.

Look at these pictures to understand what’s happened to Rwanda.

Madam Jeannette Nyiramongi Kagame consulting with “her” cabinet ministers
The Kagames leading the national leadership retreat
Madam Jeannette Nyiramongi Kagame consulting with “her” foreign minister and ambassador in the United States

Interestingly, Madam Nyiramongi Kagame has made the list of “Dictators’ Wives Club.” The authors of the Dictators’ Wives Club rightly ask: “Behind every great man is a great woman, as they say. But who stands behind the world’s dictators?”

By David Himbara