ULK GISENYI STUDENTS GO FOR GUILD COUNCIL POLLS
Democracy, the way I see it, does not grow on trees like tree-tomatoes. It is made what it is by human beings. If the latter wish, they may make democracy an envy of many or worsen it to the extent that people find it so-called democracy.
Aware of this, ULK students through their representatives cast their ballot to determine the team that will lead them in a period of one year. The event took place in the premises of the university campus on 28th February, 2015. The election was according to the perceptions of many, free and fair due to the fact that no case of disturbance was registered from the beginning to the end.
Asked the secret behind such well-organized elections, Mr Ismael Bayingana, outgoing Guild president, underscored that they did it to show people that as a university council operating in a country which is democratically led, they wanted to follow in the footsteps of the nation. “We are in a democratically ruled country. There is no way we can do what’s different from the national values in as far as democracy is concerned”, he reiterated.
At the beginning of elections, Mr Mupenzi Nsengiyumva, Dean of students requested voters and candidates to do all it takes so as to have smooth elections marked with no form of impartiality. He also reminded them that unity among them must prevail no matter the outcome of the elections. “You are all expected to conduct smooth elections and maintain your unity no matter the results to be disclosed at the end of the elections”, he requested them.
According to the electoral list availed before the beginning of elections, 190 voters were expected to cast their ballot. However, as it is for any other elections across the globe, not all of them showed up due to various reasons. 88 voters are the ones who took part in these elections. Asked whether such a number is not small for elections to take place, the dean of students said that the regulations have it that when 2/3 of the voters are around, nothing can prevent elections from taking place.
The elections were conducted in a secret ballot system, whereby each and every voter could enter the voting booth with a ballot paper in hands. When voting came to an end, it was time to count votes. The exercise was conducted smoothly in front of the candidates and observers.
The results as announced by the electoral commission, revealed that Islam Murinda scooped the position of Guild president, Bizimungu Gerard, Vice president, Isaac Dushimimana, General Secretary, Tresor Ukwishaka, Treasurer, Egide Byusa Kabasha, Ministrer of Academic Affairs, Ahmed Rafi Mutwana,Minister of Sports and Culture, Arnella Gaju Ntumurize, Minister of Public Relations, Etoile Mutoni, Minister of Protcal, Mediatrice Mahoro, Minister of Gender, Christian Sikubwabo and Minister of ICT.
Besides, the Arbitration and Control Committee got a four-man team made up of Dan Turatsinze(President), Faustin Rubayiza Mupenzi(Vice President), Olivier Mwemera Rugendo( Secretary), Charles Mugisha (1st Advisor) and Faustin Nyambo( 2nd Advisor).
All winners beat their rivals in a landslide victory by garnering a lot of votes except for the position of gender on which the candidate was unique with no challenger.
Handed the microphone, Mr Manirakiza Jean Baptiste, lecturer at Kigali Independent University thanked everyone who took part in the elections and requested winners to decently serve their colleagues, the university and the country at large.
“I owe my deepest gratitude to all those who made these elections successful. I am therefore appealing to those who have won to do their best and serve the campus community and the country as a whole”, he requested them.
In his concluding remarks, Mr Mupenzi Nsengiyumva, thanked everyone for having conducted peaceful elections. He also reminded the winners that their victory means they are going to be servants of their fellow students and make a difference in everything by living ethical values as one of the university’s principles has it.