For the first time, Rwandan President Paul Kagame has declared his intention to run for a fourth term in the country's coming Presidential elections.
The Rwandan government agreed in March to align the dates of its upcoming presidential and legislative elections, which are scheduled for August 2024.
"I am happy with the confidence Rwandans have shown in me. I will always serve them as long as I can. Yes, I am indeed a candidate," President Kagame, 65, told the French-language magazine Jeune Afrique.
Although Kagame had not publicly stated his intentions, he had undertaken contentious constitutional changes that allowed him to run for a third term and possibly continue in office until 2034.
Kagame, a former rebel leader, has been regarded as the nation's de facto leader since the 1994 genocide's ending.
In the elections of 2003, 2010, and 2017, he was re-elected with more than 90% of the vote.
Human rights organisations charge Kagame with reigning in an atmosphere of fear, limiting dissent and the right to free speech despite Rwanda's current claim to be one of the most stable nations on the African continent.