The Accountability of Leadership in relation to Term of Presidency

The purpose of political leadership or otherwise is to guide, provide solutions to problems, represent others, work with others and find broader common grounds that will improve people lives in general.

In the case of failure of a leader in performing any of these roles, there should be institutional frameworks to stop the person from going astray. Such platforms should be independent from the leader’s influence. In July 2009 Barack Obama outlined in Accra that Africa needed strong institutions and not strong personalities.

People get what they deserve. If we Africans want democracy we can have it. We have to ask ourselves how much we want it, the sacrifices we are willing to make to have it. It is usually said that there is no democracy without development, or no development without democracy, but in my opinion you can have both.

August 9th, 2010 is officially the date for the Rwandan presidential elections. Paul Kagame, the incumbent president, has been in power for 16 years. He has been ruling the RPF since 1990 and his rebel movement has been leading the country from July 1994.

Change is natural. Even the air we breathe changes. The dynamics of natural rules are such that by not conforming to them, there are enormous damages and harm that are caused or inflicted to immediate surroundings or society, and in a nation context, to citizens. And for leaders, no citizen would want to be in a situation where they get hurt by a political leadership which doesn’t follow the rules of nature.

A multiparty political system is the solution to this situation. There is no development without competition – between or within parties, regions, countries, or sectors of an economy or society. Such competition can be beneficial to everyone only if the rules are fair for every body. In order to develop and apply a competitive and fair political platform, we as citizens have an important role to play.

Let’s make sure our political leaders have only one 5 year presidential term. If their political party programme is still valid after that period let’s get that party to give us another candidate for the following 5 years. Internal competition within the party would be beneficial to overall dynamics and outcomes of change for the country.

Let’s not give to our political leaders the tools to cultivate rebel movements. Elevating these rebels into platforms of leadership does nothing but destroy the rights of citizens who are left to become victims of the vendettas of these frustrated personalities.

Let’s get up as one and get what we want and deserve. Leaders who care about us. Leaders who are accountable to us. Leaders we can replace when we see they are failing us.


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