Executive Branch Reform: Arusha Accord - 4 August 1993

PROTOCOL OF AGREEMENT ON POWER-SHARING WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF A BROAD-BASED TRANSITIONAL GOVERNMENT BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF RWANDA AND THE RWANDESE PATRIOTIC FRONT (9 JANUARY 1993)

Article 4

The Executive power shall be exercised collectively through decisions taken in Cabinet meetings, by the President of the Republic and by the Government.

Section 1: The President of the Republic and Head of State

Article 5

Upon the signing of the Peace Agreement, the incumbent President of the Republic and Head of State shall remain in office until the outcome of elections to be held at the end of the Transitional Period.

Article 6

As Head of State, the President of the Republic shall have the following prerogatives:

(a) He shall nominate the Prime Minister and other members of the Cabinet within three days following their appointment by the relevant bodies. After this period, the Prime Minister shall assume office and appoint other Members of the Cabinet.

Modalities for the appointment of the Prime Minister and other Members of the Cabinet shall be
provided for in this Peace Agreement;

(b) He shall nominate and accredit Ambassadors, Plenipotentiaries and Extraordinary Envoys abroad, after their appointment by the Cabinet. He shall receive credentials of Ambassadors and Extraordinary Envoys from abroad, after their approval by the Cabinet;

(c) He shall represent the Rwandese State in its relations with other States;

(d) He shall sanction and promulgate, without any right of veto, bills passed by the National Assembly and Orders in Council adopted in the Cabinet meetings within ten days following the date of receipt of the ruling on their constitutionality. After this period, Orders in Council shall be sanctioned and promulgated by the Prime Minister, and the bills shall be sanctioned and promulgated by the Speaker of the Transitional National Assembly;

(e) He shall declare war and sign armistice upon the decision of the Cabinet and after authorization by the National Assembly. To this end, he shall bear the title of Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. The Army and other security forces shall be accountable to the Cabinet, in accordance with the modalities specified in the Peace Agreement.

Article 7

The President of the Republic shall have the right to include any issue of national interest on the agenda of Cabinet meetings.

Article 8

The President of the Republic may, if he so wishes, attend meetings of the Cabinet. In this case, he shall chair the Cabinet meetings.

Article 9

Executive Orders by the President of the Republic, shall be discussed and adopted by the Cabinet. Since the President of the Republic shall have the right to be involved in decision-making in the Cabinet, he shall have no right of veto on decisions regularly taken by the Cabinet, in particular, draft Presidential Orders when these are submitted to him by the Prime Minister for signature. This signature officializing the Presidential Orders adopted in the Cabinet, shall be effected within ten days following the day of receipt of the said Orders at the Presidency of the Republic. After this period, the decision shall come into force by way of a Prime Ministerial Order.

Article 10

Legal Acts by the President of the Republic shall be countersigned by the Prime Minister and by relevant Ministers and Secretaries of State.

Article 11

In pursuance of the decisions of the Cabinet and in conformity with the procedure defined under Article 9 of the present Protocol, the President of the Republic shall sign Presidential Orders with regard to the following:

1. the prerogative of mercy;

2. the minting of currency;

3. award of the National Orders:

4. the implementation of laws, when he is so required;

5. the appointment and termination of services of the following senior civil servants:
- the Principal Private Secretary to the President of the Republic;
- the Chancellor for National Orders;
- the Governor of the National Bank of Rwanda;
- the Rector of the National University of Rwanda;
- Ambassadors;
- the Secretary to the Cabinet;
- the Personal Secretary to the President of the Republic;
- Advisors in the Presidency of the Republic;
- Principal Private Secretaries in Ministries;
- Advisors in Ministries;
- Head of the Prosecution Department at the Supreme Court;

6. Ratification of International Treaties, Conventions and Agreements. However, Peace Treaties, Treaties of Alliance, Treaties which may entail altering national borders or affect the rights of sovereignty, Treaties on the association of the Republic with one or several other States, as well as Treaties, Conventions and Agreements with financial implications not catered for in the budget, shall be implemented only after their approval by way of a law. The federation of the Republic of Rwanda with one or several other democratic States must be approved through a Referendum.

Article 12

The President of the Republic shall address messages to the Nation, the content of which shall be decided upon by the Cabinet.

Section 2: The Broad-based Transitional Government

Article 13

The current structure of the Government, namely, the number and appellation of Ministries, shall remain unchanged. However, a Secretariat of State in the Prime Minister's Office in charge of Social Rehabilitation and Integration shall be established.
It shall be responsible for:

1. Repatriation and social and economic reintegration of the Rwandese refugees who may wish to go back home;

2. A Post-War Rehabilitation Programme as defined under Item 23.D of the present Protocol.

Article 14

The political parties participating in the Coalition Government established on 16th April, 1992 as well as the Rwandese Patriotic Front shall have the responsibility to set up the Broad-Based Transitional Government. They shall decide, by consensus, on the other political formations which may participate in that Government.

Article 15

The Government shall be composed of the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, Ministers and Secretaries of State.

Sub-section 1: The Powers of the Government:

Article 16

The Government shall be responsible for the management of the country. It shall determine and implement national policy. In so doing, the Government shall:

1. Be responsible for the implementation of laws and regulations;

2. Negotiate and conclude international Treaties, Conventions and Agreements;

3. Discuss and adopt draft bills and present them to the National Assembly;

4. Discuss and adopt Orders in Council, in situations of emergency or when the National Assembly is unable to seat, and transmit them to the President of the Republic for promulgation;

5. Appoint and dismiss civil servants.

6. Discuss and adopt Presidential, Prime Ministerial and Ministerial Statutory Orders on the
implementation of laws.

Article 17

The Government shall be the guarantor of national sovereignty and national unity.

Sub-section 2: The Prime Minister

Article 18:

The Prime Minister shall:

1. In accordance with the Peace Agreement and in consultation with the political forces, prepare the Government programme;

2. In conformity with the modalities provided for in the Peace Agreement, select the other members of the Cabinet;

3. Present the Government programme and the Ministerial team responsible for its implementation to the National Assembly;

4. Lead Government business, convene and chair Cabinet Meetings. He shall prepare the agenda for cabinet meetings, in consultation with the other members of the Government. The Prime Minister shall communicate the agenda to the President of the Republic and to the other members of the Government, at least two days before the date of the meeting.

5. Determine the functions of the Ministers and Secretaries of State as well as the nature and extent of powers of the services under them. The Ministers and Secretaries of State shall be delegated powers by the Prime Minister for the management of the duties of their departments. The Prime Minister shall determine the extent of this delegation of power.

6. In pursuance of the decisions of the Cabinet, sign Prime Ministerial Orders for the appointment and termination of services of the following senior civil servants:

- the Principal Private Secretary to the Prime Minister;

- Deputy Governors of the National Bank of Rwanda;

- Vice-Rectors of the National University of Rwanda;

- Advisers and "Chefs de Service" in the Prime Minister's Office;

- the "Prefets de Prefecture";

- Director in Public Enterprises;

- Directors General in the Ministries;

- Planning and Coordination Officers in Public Enterprises;

- Directors in Public Enterprises and Representatives of the Government in Parastatals;

- Directors and Heads of Division in the Ministries:

- "Sous-Prefets";

- Bourgmestres;

- Deputy Directors of Public Prosecution at the Supreme Court;

- Head of the Prosecution Department of the Courts of Appeal;

- Deputy Directors of the Courts of Appeal;

- Head of the Prosecution Department at the Courts of First Instance;

- Assistant State Attorneys.

Upon delegation of power by the Cabinet,

(a) the Minister responsible for the Civil Service shall sign Ministerial Orders with regard to appointments and termination of services of Civil Servants from the rank of chief Clerk or equivalent and lower-level posts.

(b) The Minister of Justice shall sign Ministerial Orders for the appointment and termination of services of Judicial staff other than magistrates.

(c) In Public Enterprises, senior staff shall be appointed by the Board of Directors and the rest of the staff by the relevant Director.

7. Countersign, after their promulgation by the President of the Republic, bills passed by the National Assembly as well as Statutory Orders in Council adopted by the Cabinet.

8. By way of Orders decided upon during cabinet meetings, implement laws and regulations when he is required to do so.

9. Address messages to the Nation whose content shall be decided upon by the Cabinet.

10. May, under exceptional circumstances, after a decision taken by the Cabinet and on consultation with the Bureau of the National Assembly and the Supreme Court, declare a State of Siege or a State of Emergency.

Article 19

Legal acts by the Prime Minister shall be countersigned relevant Ministers and Secretaries of State.

Sub-section 3: Functions of the Deputy Prime Minister

Article 20

The Deputy Prime Minister shall:

1. Upon formal delegation of power, replace the Prime Minister in the event of his absence or hindrance.

2. Act as Prime Minister when the post falls vacant, until a new Prime Minister is appointed, following modalities provided for in the Peace Agreement.

3. In addition, hold a Ministerial Portfolio.

Sub-Section 4: Mode of Decision-Making within the Government

Article 21

Prior to the deliberations, the Cabinet meeting shall adopt its agenda. Cabinet decisions shall be taken by consensus. Where consensus is not reached, the issue at hand shall be returned to the relevant Minister for further study. Consensus on the issue shall once again be required subsequent discussions, and if no consensus is reached, a decision shall be taken on the basis of a partial consensus of a 2/3 of the members of the Government present. For the following issues, however, consensus shall be mandatory:

- amendment to the Peace Agreement;

- declaration of war;

- exercise of the prerogative of mercy and mitigation of sentence;

- defence and security matters,

Article 22

For each Cabinet Meeting, minutes and a summary of decisions shall be written. The summary shall be approved and signed by members who attended the said meeting.

Implementation History

1993

No Implementation

No developments observed this year.

1994

Intermediate Implementation

According to the UN Secretary General’s report, a broad-based government of national unity was installed on 19 July 1994 and established control over the Rwandan territory.1 Although the national unity government was in place in 1994, this does not indicate that the reforms agreed in the Arusha accord of 1993 were fully implemented. The president and the victorious RPF dominated government activities and unilaterally assumed the cabinet posts previously allocated to the MRND, then in exile. The RPF also created a powerful post of vice-president not mentioned in the Arusha Accords and occupied by RPF leader Paul Kagame, who simultaneously served as minister of defense. The accord requires a counter signature by the Prime Minister in bills passed by the legislature.

  • 1. "Secretary General’s Report to the Security Council," United Nations (S/1994/1133), October 6, 1994)
1995

Intermediate Implementation

The National Unity Government was in place between July 1994 and 2003 (2003 being the last year of observation in the database). The government had finalized an eight point program in July 1994 forming the basis of the agenda of the National Unity Government, to which the prime minister, in September 1995, said still committed.2 On 8 March 2000, Prime Minister Pierre-Celestin Rwigema resigned on charges of corruption and was replaced by Bertrand Makuza from the same political party (MRD).3 Similarly, on 23 March 2000, Rwanda's Hutu President, Pasteur Bizimungu--in power for almost five years since the genocide of 1994, resigned, thus paving the way for the accession of Vice President and Defense Minister Paul Kagame, who led the RPF rebel force and established it as a more powerful actor on the Rwandan political stage.4 Although the National Unity Government was in place, the reforms sought in the executive branch of the government were not implemented, partly because the president and the prime minister functioned as ceremonial heads of the state and the government, respectively, while real power resided with the defense minister and vice president, Paul Kagame.

On 29 September 2003, elections for National Assembly took place in which RPF won 40, PSD 7, PL 6. The National Assembly was comprised of only 53 seats.5 This effectively ended the power-sharing legislature and provided for increased political influence by the RPF, a former rebel group.

  • 2. "New Prime Minister Says He Will Continue With Government Programme," BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, September 4, 1995
  • 3. "Mazuka Appointed Rwanda Premier," Associated Press Online, March 8, 2000
  • 4. "Rwanda's Post-Genocide Hutu President Quits," Agence France Presse, March 23, 2000
  • 5. "The World Factbook-2003," CIA, 2003, accessed September 11, 2011, http://www.theodora.com/wfb2003/rwanda/rwanda_government.html.
1996

Intermediate Implementation

No further developments observed.

1997

Intermediate Implementation

No further developments observed.

1998

Intermediate Implementation

No further developments observed.

1999

Intermediate Implementation

No further developments observed.

2000

Intermediate Implementation

No further developments observed.

2001

Intermediate Implementation

No further developments observed.

2002

Intermediate Implementation

No further developments observed.