Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame has confirmed that he will seek a fourth term in office next year, following his recent re-election as the chairman of the country's dominant ruling party, Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF).
"I am happy with the confidence that the Rwandans have shown in me. I will always serve them, as much when I can. Yes, I am indeed a candidate," Kagame told Jeune Afrique magazine in an interview published on Tuesday.
Mr Kagame, 65, has been President since 2000. In 2003, the Rwandan constitution was changed, giving the president a seven-year tenure renewable once.
But another change in 2015 removed the seven-year term and allowed a president to serve two five-year terms, starting in 2017 -- which allowed Kagame to run for his third term.
The referendum to change the constitution in 2015 garnered more than 90 percent supporters.
Article 101 of the revised constitution says the term of office of the president is five years. He or she may be re-elected once.
However, article 172 (1) says the President of the Republic in office at the time of this constitution comes into force continues to serve seven years for which he was elected.
Article 172 (2) says the provisions of Article 101 of this Constitution take effect after a seven-year term of office of the President of the Republic referred to in Paragraph 1 of this article.
If elected in 2024, Kagame is eligible to serve for 10 years.
While the National Electoral Commission is yet to release the official calendar, Parliament recently approved the merger of the parliamentary election originally scheduled for September this year with presidential election happening next year.