This is with reference to Louis Gakumba’s article, ‘Let no one fool you, Rwandans abroad’, (The New Times, September 2). Mr Gakumba is making some really good points about the Rwandan, in particular, and African Diaspora in general. I totally agree with him when it comes to the kind of stress we live in our daily lives in western countries.
However, I think the writer is forgetting that hard work is what made these nations great. For the last two years, I have made five trips to Rwanda; the truth is that people who make a difference in Rwanda work hard too, harder than we do in the United States.
I believe that the reason why some people don’t go back to their motherland is that they are afraid of not making as much money as they make here. Economically, the latter reason is wrong because the index of the cost of living in Rwanda is low meaning that with less money they could be as happy as they are abroad.
There are also many opportunities out there in Rwanda and Africa that cannot be found anywhere else. My point is that people who think about spending their whole lives in the West are missing out, they are underestimating their potential.
I think that the most successful people in Rwanda are those who went abroad to get knowledge (or the starting capital) and then returned to Rwanda to work or to invest. Great read indeed!
Jean-Léon Iragena, United States
I am really impressed by your article, dear Louis. Yes, we are running out of money, but in reality, the very reason why we came here was to seek knowledge and we have a target of eventually bringing those acquired skills to Rwanda.
What sometimes surprises me is that most of our young generation who came here in the United States doesn’t feel like going back home. My advice is that we should all stop complaining about trivial things such as fearing to go back home because of the cold shower, dusty roads… We should start thinking of how we can take the knowledge we have acquired abroad and then turn it into an effective tool to bring the change we need to develop our beloved country.
Yvette Kayirangwa, Georgia, United States
You only realise that the world is moving much faster than you thought upon your return form “overseas”. It’s sometimes embarrassing to find that people you left back home have moved much faster than you. Many friends of mine in Asia where I lived for two years can’t come back home because they can’t afford that air ticket.
As a result, some have been imprisoned and are growing rice in China, Thailand and Singapore. Thank you, Louis for such an awakening article.