“In the life of an individual, 50 years is a milestone; it’s the same for an institution.” These are the words of Donald Kaberuka, African Development Bank President, at a gala dinner organized in Kigali for the Bank’s Golden Jubilee. The journey that started in 1964 has seen the AfDB grow to include 54 regional member countries (RMCs) with 32 field offices across the continent.
Africa’s premier development finance institution, the AfDB was created with the aim of mobilizing resources for the economic and social development of its regional member countries (RMCs) through supporting poverty reduction programs and promoting sustainable growth. The Bank is credited with approving 4,001 loans and grants amounting to approximately US $104 billion and has become the partner of choice for its borrowing member countries, especially in difficult times.
The gala event that took on May 22, 2014 during the AfDB Annual Meetings is part of a series of activities organized throughout the year, which will end in week-long celebrations in November in Abidjan. Attended by Rwandan President Paul Kagame and William Ruto, Deputy President of Kenya, the event celebrated the half-century-long achievements of the Bank.
Louise Mushikiwabo, Rwanda’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, commended the Bank on its tireless support of development efforts on the continent and its excellent performance.
“The Bank cannot develop alone, it needs partners and we are committed to working with the AfDB,” said Claver Gatete, Rwandan Minister of Finance and Economic Planning. He also emphasized the need for African countries to work together, highlighting the benefits of regional blocs such as the East African Community. “It used to take 18 days to take a container from the Mombasa port to Kampala, but that time has been cut by more than half,” said Gatete
“Our meeting here is more than marking an important achievement, it’s about business, the business of moving Africa forward,” said Paul Kagame.