Mount Kigali University (MKU) has officially received the instruments of power from its Board of Trustees. This happened on Friday, September 15, following the earlier granting of full autonomy by the Government of Rwanda. ALSO READ: Mount Kenya University Rwanda changes name to Mount Kigali University The handover ceremony, held at the MKU campus located in Gatenga sector, Kicukiro District, was graced by the founder and Board of Trustees Chairman Prof. Simon Gicharu who handed over the instruments to MKU Chancellor Prof. Stanley Waudo who in turn handed them over to Dr. Innocent Mugisha Sebasaza, the Chairman of university governing body (Council). Dr. Mugisha then handed over to Vice Chancellor Dr. Martin Kimemia. The instruments are a mace, seal, logo, flag and the Internal University Statues and the Communique from the Government of Rwanda, officially identifying the campus as an autonomous international institution of higher learning and not a cross-border institution. The mace is a visual representation of MKU’s commitment to upholding academic integrity, tradition and pursuit of knowledge. On the other hand, the seal is the official signature of the university. It is through the seal that official documents, degrees, diplomas, and certificates are imbued with the weight of the university’s authority. The Statutes are the foundation upon which Mount Kigali University will be governed. ALSO READ: Mount Kenya University Rwanda gets accredited “This is a culmination of tireless efforts by the Board, Council, University Management and support from our students, their parents and guardians as well,” said Prof. Gicharu, a Kenyan-born international educationalist. Mount Kigali University was formerly a campus of Mount Kenya University, East and Central Africa’s largest private university. On April 20, after an elaborate process that lasted more than five years, it was granted accreditation and legal personality to operate as Mount Kigali University. “This is the first time that an institution has started as a campus and graduated into a fully-fledged university in Rwanda,” said Dr. Mugisha, adding that “Many have tried and failed.” The entry of Mount Kenya University into Rwanda, which is now Mount Kigali University, was enabled by Annexure 12 of the East African Community Common Market Protocol. The Protocol allowed mutual recognition of academic qualifications. Equally, Mount Kigali University has continued with this momentum to embrace internationalization of education. MKU is now a member of the Inter-University Council of East Africa. The internationalization drive has also seen the university recruit international faculty, students, and benchmark against some of the best universities in the world. ALSO READ: Mount Kigali University, Imbuto Foundation to build two ECD classes in Kicukiro Besides top Mount Kigali University administrators, others who attended the event were Imbuto Foundation’s representative, Mireille Musaniwabo, and Innocent Kagabo, the Registrar of the National Council of Nurses and Midwives. Kagabo described the campus as an “indispensable partner in training of nurses,’’ adding that this occasion strengthens the ongoing partnership in addressing issues such as shortage of nurses.” On the other hand, Roseanne Muregwa, an alumni of Mount Kenya University Rwanda said, “This remarkable institution has changed the course of our lives. We are proud to be beneficiaries of Prof. Gicharu’s vision.” Mount Kigali University Vice Chancellor Dr. Martin Kimemia emphasized the importance of this transition. He stated, “The institution is determined to shape its own destiny, and to provide a nurturing environment where intellectual curiosity will flourish. This will be backed up by state-of-the-art infrastructure for curricular and co-curricular activities.” ALSO READ: Why Mount Kenya University Rwanda leads in hospitality The university is constructing a hotel (Kigali Paramount Hotel) in Gatenga sector, which will offer practical training for its students from the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. Kigali Paramount Hotel will be a regional center of excellence in Hospitality training. In addition, Mount Kigali University will soon open a University Medical Centre where its staff, students, alumni and community will receive medical services. “We have also invested about Rwf200 million to buy dental equipment in preparation to roll out Dentistry courses,” added Prof.Gicharu. During the event, the Vice Chancellor received an accreditation certificate from International Human Resource Certification Institute, enabling Mount Kigali University to start giving certification to Human Resource professionals. With the autonomy and receipt of Instruments of Power, students from Mount Kigali University will now be graduating right here in Rwanda. “I am looking forward to that day,” said Dr. Kimemia. “Our graduates will celebrate their academic milestones in the presence of their parents, guardians, friends and siblings as well.” The colorful ceremony was lit up by entertainment by Rwanda Cultural Troupe who performed the famous Intore dance.