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Paul Kagame Talks To English To Africa - 2003-08-28

Rwandan president Paul Kagame says he will form a broad-based government. He says his re-election to a seven-year term gives him an opportunity to rebuild the country and deepen the reconciliation process started nine years ago.

President Kagame spoke with English to Africa reporter Francois Nsengiyumva, who asked him whether his landslide victory came as a surprise.

Mr. Kagame said that based on the good job he has been doing for the last nine years, he expected a victory. But he added that the fact that he won 95% of the votes came as a nice surprise and shows how much trust the Rwandan people have placed in him.

The main opposition candidate, Faustin Twagiramungu, has leveled charges of widespread rigging and intimidation. President Kagame said those allegations are not fair; he asked Mr. Twagiramungu to accept the will of the people and allow the country to move on.

President Kagame said his next seven-year term will provide a good opportunity to improve and stabilize bilateral relations with neighboring DRC and Uganda. He also said one of his priorities is to speed up the trials of genocide suspects in an effort to significantly reduce the number of people in jail.

Click the above links to download or listen to President Kagame's comments.