The Mouvement democratique republicain (MDR) party of former prime minister Pierre-Celestin Rwigema has said it will hold elections for a new party president, the Rwanda News Agency reported. The party dismissed Rwigema as its president after he fled the country and sought asylum in the US, accusing the Rwandan authorities of dictatorship. The MDR executive secretary, Christian Marara, told RNA the party’s vice-president Celestin Kabanda would step in as interim leader, until elections were held in 30 days’ time. In a statement, the MDR distanced itself from Rwigema’s comments about the Rwandan government. RNA pointed out that this was the fourth MDR leadership change in six years. Another former premier, Faustin Twagiramungu, also fled the country and is currently in Belgium, and his successor - Bonaventure Ubarijoro - is under detention on genocide charges.
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