Rwandans stand a united people today – Kagame
Presidents; Paul Kagame, Museveni, Salva Kiir and Uhuru Kenyatta during celebrations to mark 20 years of Rwanda’s Liberation
President Paul Kagame has said that despite the dark history the Country went through twenty years ago, Rwandans stand a united people to day.
Kagame said this on Friday, during celebrations to mark 20th anniversary of Rwanda’s Liberation.
This year’s Liberation was dubbed: “Kwibohora20” and was celebrated under the theme: “Together we prosper”.
Speaking at a colourful event that was attended by East African Heads of States; President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni of Uganda, Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya; President Salva Kiir of S.Sudan and Burundi first Vice President Prosper Bazombanza, President Kagame said that today, Rwandans stand firm as one people who liberated themselves, set and guided their destiny- something he said has never happened in Rwanda before.
“Rwandans stand together today as a people united, liberated and focused as never before…on attaining the future we want. On the 4th of July in 1994, the darkest part of history was brought to a close and life could begin anew,” said Kagame.
The Head of State reminded Rwandans that despite having moved a step to liberate themselves, a lot still need to be done.
“We still have a long way to go, but Rwanda has been able to come this far because we owned up. We can get the future we want if we all hold each other accountable for it.”
Kagame added that Liberation reminds great sacrifices of all involved.
“To those who left to fight, many never came home. To those who dedicated themselves to grassroots education on the struggle and those who supported the course with whatever resources they had…today we remember all of them in a spirit of gratitude,” Kagame said amidst applause from the audience.
Kagame said that the losses endured by every Rwandan family “strengthens our selves to safeguard what we have gained.”
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata who is the chairperson of the East African Community said that the regional block and Kenyans stand with Rwandans in commemorating Liberation but also stand with them in resisting anything that can sabotage their development.
“20 years ago today, our sorrow, our respect for your recovery are immeasurable,” he said.
President Kenyatta regretted that the region could have done more to help save Rwanda from evil. Kenyatta, however, praised Rwanda for recovering tremendously.
“Rwanda has advanced mightily. You have restored order, rule of Justice, peace and reconciliation. Your example of reconciliation inspires us all.
President Kenyatta assured that the East African Community and Kenya stand by Rwandans.
The Minister of foreign affairs, Louise Mushikiwabo saluted all those who stood firm and took up arms to liberate the Country, and passed on special tribute to President Kagame who led the struggle that has made Rwanda what it is today.
“We salute those brave men and women whose endurance spirit (Inkotanyi) brought us in relation and possibility of a new beginning of a united nation. They were led by our President Paul Kagame. We cannot say often enough, Mr. President how much we appreciate your selfless and tireless service to the people of this Country. You symbolize the resilience and hope that this nation hope for the future.”
Minister Mushikiwabo later on read a statement from President Salva Kiir on behalf of the people of South Sudan who particularly thanked Rwanda for standing strong in helping save lives of innocent civilians in their Country.
This year’s Kwibohora20 was marked by different humanitarian activities including construction of health centres across the Country as well as free medical services to the community by Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF)