GASABO - After seven years and five months serving as the Minister of Defence, Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi yesterday passed the mantle to Gen. James Kabarebe who replaces him at the ministry as he heads to his new assignment as the Minister of Disaster Preparedness and Refugee affairs.
The ceremony, which took place at the ministrys headquarters, was witnessed buy top commanders of Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF).
The two Ministers held close-door talks before the outgoing minister showed the incoming around his new office.
Prior to his appointment, Kabarebe had been serving as the RDF Chief of Defence Staff (CDS). He was replaced by Lt. Gen Charles Kayonga who was the Chief of Staff Land Forces. Kayonga was in turn replaced by Lt. Gen Caesar Kayizari.
The new army bosses also handed over to their replacements and Kabarebe formally handed over the office to Kayonga.
Speaking to the press shortly after the ceremony, army spokesperson, Maj. Jill Rutaremara, said that during their talks, the two ministers agreed to continue working together since Gatsinzis new ministry will be working directly with his former.
The two officials exchanged all official documents pertaining to the job, including the policy strategy and laws governing the ministry. On his part, Gen. Gatsinzi praised the new minister for having risen through the ranks to where he is today,
The outgoing minister also noted that it is important to note that the new minister is no stranger to his new posting, having worked with him during his tenure; to which he noted that the handover is unique from what happens in others ministries since the new minister has been part and parcel of the ministry, Rutaremara said.
Rutaremara added that Gatsinzi acknowledged the fact that his new ministry has something in common with the Defence Ministry since the RDF plays a key role when it comes to dealing with disaster. He added that he would remain part of RDF and a good ambassador of the countrys forces wherever he will be serving.
Gen. Kabarebe on the other hand thanked President Paul Kagame for having shown confidence in him and other newly promoted officers by giving them new challenges, vowing to live up to the expectations of the appointing authority.
Kabarebe also pledged to always seek counsel to his predecessor for they have worked together for a long time, to which the outgoing minister agreed. The outgoing CDS also pledged to continue working hand-in-hand with the new RDF command.