The African Development Bank is committed to Rwanda’s vision of transformation to a middle income economy as it commemorates the 20th anniversary of the genocide against the Tutsi in April 1994, said the President of the African Development Bank, Donald Kaberuka, while attending the commemoration ceremony held in Kigali, Rwanda, on April 7, 2014.
The commemoration ceremony held under the theme Kwibuka 20 (Kwibuka means ‘remember’ in Kinyarwanda, Rwanda’s national language) was held at Amahoro Stadium in Kigali.
Attended by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Heads of State from Uganda, Kenya, South Sudan, Mali, Somalia and the Republic of Congo, along with development partners, this year’s theme was to remember the lives that were lost, encourage reconciliation for unity and mitigate the risk of conflict.
In his speech, Paul Kagame, the President of the Republic of Rwanda, said, “We made three fundamental choices that guide us to this day. One, we chose to stay together; two, we chose to be accountable to ourselves; and three, we chose to think big.” He pointed out that when Rwanda’s Vision 2020 was created and the Government committed to meeting its development goals it was ambitious. “There is more work ahead of us, but Rwandans are ready,” he said.
The African Development Bank has been an active partner of the Rwandan Government since 1974. With total commitment of close to US $400 million, the Bank’s efforts that are aligned to Rwanda’s Vision 2020 aimed at transforming the country into a lower middle income economy by improving its competitiveness while ensuring unity and inclusive growth and development. To that end, the Bank’s contribution in water and sanitation, transport, energy, agriculture, private sector development and education seek to ensure that Rwanda achieves its developmental goals.
The AfDB’s 2012 Development Effective Review for Rwanda – its first-ever country-focused version of the publication – recognizes that Rwanda has averaged 8% economic growth since 2000, demonstrating a healthy resilience in the face of adverse global economic conditions. The Government’s programs to tackle rural poverty have contributed to poverty reduction, from 57% in 2005 to 45% in 2011. For this reason and others, Rwanda is now seen as a model to other African countries.
The African Development Bank remains a committed partner as Rwanda charts its path towards continued development success.