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16 independent candidates bid for seats in Rwandan parliamentary election

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Kigali, Rwanda, Jumy 10 (Infosplusgabon) - At least 16 independent candidates, including one woman, will contest the upcoming parliamentary polls, to be held 2-3 September, 2018, the chairman of the National Electoral Commission (NEC), Kalisa Mbanda, confirmed Tuesday in Kigali.

The NEC official explained that among those independent candidates, the majority are mainly young candidates.


All independent contenders were asked to submit some key requirements which include 600 signatures of registered voters who support them, with at least 12 from each of Rwanda's 30 districts.


July 25 has been set at the deadline for the submission of he requirements.


Electioneering campaigns will take place between 13 August and 1 September, ahead of the parliamentary polls.


As was the case in 2003 and 2013, some political parties have announced their intention to form a coalition under the umbrella of the ruling Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF).


These are the Rwandan Socialist Party (PSR), Democratic Union of the Rwandan People (UDPR), and Party for Progress and Concord (PPC).


Phillipe Mpayimana, who ran as an independent in the 2017 presidential contest, is among those bidding for parliamentary seats, again as an independent candidate.


So far, only three parties have approved their list of candidates.


They are the ruling RPF, the Social Democratic party (PSD, french acronym) and the opposition Democratic Green Party of Rwanda (DGPR), the electoral commission said.


In addition, the opposition Democratic Green Party of Rwanda held its general assembly earlier this month and approved 55 candidates made up of 21 women and 34 men.


Of the 80 members of the Lower Chamber of Parliament, women account for 64 percent.





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