WEF came and went...

WEF-Africa is a rather difficult acronym, unlike straight-forward ones like MTN and RBA and WASAC and... The thing about WEF is that you can either choose to give it the rightful treatment as an acronym and break it down to the letter -- W, E, and then F; or you can choose to treat it as a word and simply say Wef.

WEF-Africa is a rather difficult acronym, unlike straight-forward ones like MTN and RBA and WASAC and …

The thing about WEF is that you can either choose to give it the rightful treatment as an acronym and break it down to the letter –W, E, and then F; or you can choose to treat it as a word and simply say Wef.

So maybe Professor James Vuningoma, the Executive Secretary of the Rwanda Academy of Language and Culture should help us out with the proper way to say it. He is very good when it comes to languages. 

This is something that is very necessary since in a few years from now, the Rwanda Education Board (REB) will be jogging the memories of young Rwandan learners sitting their Primary Leaving Examinations:

QN: What year did Rwanda proudly and ably host the World Economic Forum on Africa (WEF)?

What year was it when Rwanda rolled out the red carpet to thousands of political and diplomatic royalty, much to the envy of its well-known international haters?

Although the Kigali Convention Center did not host the event like many people naturally (and understandably) think, it did not sit back or lie low like a flat envelope to wait for its turn.

Instead, it shone bright. So bright that the Discover Rwanda Youth Hostel, which was one of the early casualties to give way to the ambitious project, soon found itself trailing the convention center, having been ‘forced’ to move from their original location. 

Recently when I went with a group of tourists to check out the hostel’s new site in Kimihurura, I was shocked to see glossy pictures advertising the hostel’s newest site, right at the back of the convention center.

In other words, these people are speculators, though not the only ones. 

There are many more other speculators that the MICE boom in Kigali, and particularly the majestic rise of the KCC has spawned, and most of them are concentrated right there in the dense Kimihurura hospitality district.

Hotels and other hospitality service providers around this area are changing hands (or upping their game) at a rate never seen before, in anticipation of the impending MICE boom. 

On a more personal note, I missed out on the WEF extravaganza for some reason. 

Weeks before the event, I had embarked on systematically sprucing myself up before my editors so that I could land the much sought-after press tag. 

That did not happen. 

What happened is that I was instead sent off to cover the 35th birthday anniversary celebrations for reggae music icon Robert Nesta Marley. 

So while my colleagues like Collins Mwai and Athan Tashobya were being whisked off by the company driver to the Kigali Conference and Exhibition Centre , the tented venue for WEF, my own destination was Kwa Rasta. 

If you have been to or driven past Kwa Rasta, then you know that half of the sprawling facility is skirted by an extensive corn field. 

At Bob Marley’s anniversary gig on Wednesday night, I had expected that a live grill would be set up and people allowed into the plantation to harvest and later roast their own corn. 

Also, since it was dubbed Bob Marley Festival, I expected a few goats and bulls to be mutilated for a live barbecue, for what’s a festival without meat?

 

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