What US Military AID cut mean to Rwanda government

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By Robert Mugabe

KIGALI-RWANDA- United States Department will not obligate $200,000 in Fiscal Year 2012 FMF funds that were intended to support a Rwandan academy for non-commissioned officers.

These funds will be reallocated for programming in another country according to Hilary Fuller Renner, Spokesperson Bureau of African Affairs, U.S. Department of State

State department say, this is in light of information that Rwanda is supporting armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the Department of State has decided it can no longer provide Foreign Military Financing (FMF) appropriated in the current fiscal year to Rwanda, considering a restriction imposed by the 2012 appropriation act.

“We will continue to provide assistance to Rwanda to enhance its capacity to support peacekeeping missions. And the Department continues to assess whether other steps should be taken in response to Rwanda’s actions with respect to the DRC,” Renner said.

Reacting on the US decision, Rwanda’s Minister of foreign affairs and regional cooperation who’s also governments’ spokesperson, Louise Mushikiwabo said Rwanda is not negotiating.

“While we respect the rights of any development partner, at the same time we must make clear to our friends in Washington and elsewhere that this decision is based on bad information, and is wrong on the facts. As we have made clear from the outset, Rwanda is neither the cause nor the enabler of instability in the eastern DRC.” Mushikiwabo said

However, some commentators believe that there is always a divide in Washington between the Defence department (DoD) and State department,  that looks strictly at strategic matters, hence they have had connections with RPF from 1990 onwards.

What’s the fuss about supposed US suspension of $200,000 to Rwanda? That’s drop in ocean because Rwanda army 2012-13 budget is $88.2million

Experts think that, what’s vital here is not about $200,000 but, the diplomatic symbolism matters, since EU has been blaming US for failing to issue a warning to darling ally. This means that EU and other potential development partners might come bolder to cut direct Aid to Rwanda following US gesture. Though, Rwanda still insists that the decision is based on miss-information.

Speaking during the pass-out of the Staff and Command graduates, President Paul Kagame said that “International community has power to screw up and blame it on somebody else.” Adding that, problems in DRC, were caused by international community. “They (International community) are so arrogant, they don’t listen”

As Rwanda attracts media attention than before, it has made it possible for scrutiny. Rwanda needs ton play there games right to avoid other development partners take US lead.

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