Pan Butamire

butapa@gmail.com

Rwanda is healthy and wealthy…at heart

The above statement by President Paul Kagame, at the YouthConnekt Summit this October 9 in Kigali, kicked me back to the times before 1994. But first things first. The statement referred to how this country has thrown her doors open to all citizens of the world who wish to visit. Particularly...

Friday, October 18, 2019, 12:00 AM

Solidifying Rwandans’ affinity towards one another

I remember the good times à gogo, aplenty no exaggeration, that we used to have in secondary school outside classes, as refugees. We were a wee minority in comparison with locals and so you’d certainly have expected us to be a forlorn lot. Interestingly, we were far from that. Having come...

Friday, October 11, 2019, 12:00 AM

The improbable genesis of a notable turnaround

Lest they forget, Rwandans should constantly sing about the long, hard way they’ve travelled. So hard that anybody can validly call today’s Rwanda a miracle risen from death. That’s why anyone so much as remotely familiar with her recent history would have expected last Tuesday...

Friday, October 4, 2019, 12:00 AM

No place in the world to hide for this neighbourhood’s terrorists

And so it came to pass that what was long destined to happen manifested spectacularly as only a happenstance could. That a tea-spoon hung suspended, frozen in mid-motion, its to-and-fro duty-journeys between mouth and maize-porridge bowl brought to a dead-end. That no more washing down the 5AM...

Friday, September 27, 2019, 1:04 AM

Those willing ill on Rwanda all but dead as a dodo

As we used to say in school that l-o-o-o-n-g ago, “Results are out!” However, in the case of today, the results have been afloat in the air only they hadn’t received the stamp of authority. Today, what has only been speculation is the truth you can take to the bank. Rwandan...

Friday, September 20, 2019, 12:00 AM

No country has ever falsified itself into positive transformation

A letter to the editor of weeks ago in this daily is still nibbling at my mind. The author, quoting a known Rwanda-hating foreign paper’s report that this country was doctoring her economic growth statistics to paint a rosy picture of Rwanda, said he was in agreement. Supposedly, the...

Friday, September 13, 2019, 12:00 AM

Display of Western arrogance towards Africans

They’d always been humble humans, living harmoniously with neighbors and occupiers of their land. Understandably, quite often protesting this forced occupation but still ready for a peaceful parting of ways with the self-imposed occupier. Now here they are, refugees crouching in tall...

Friday, September 6, 2019, 12:00 AM

Tasmanian Devil or wronged elephant, none can wreak havoc like the Interahamwe did

“Wari uzi ko?”, a Kinyarwanda programme by Ismail Mwanafunzi, has definitely been lifted from its interesting but sometimes shallow and repetitive nature and placed into a niche of Radio Rwanda’s researched presentations. And with a befitting voice to it, too. Last week it was...

Friday, August 30, 2019, 12:00 AM

A nation that ceaselessly seeks to better itself

Senior citizens who, by dint of your hard work, have made it into the class of those owning jalopies, know this. In the morning, you hear your brood piping, “Dad/Mom, we’ll be late!” You try to impress upon them the need for hard work; that nothing comes easy in life, with:...

Friday, August 16, 2019, 12:00 AM

A ‘wooden Rwanda’ for climate change mitigation?

Ethiopians certainly broke a climatic record the other day. On a voluntary basis, they planted 350 million tree-seedlings in a single day! It’s a feat that none else has conquered. Rwandans, used to being the preserve of swiftly-bagged firsts in diverse areas, should feel a tinge of healthy...

Friday, August 9, 2019, 12:00 AM

How the hell did Rwandans do it? Grit, resilience, common vision, that’s partly how

Asked how “the hell [Rwandans] did it” in a recent TEF Entrepreneurship Forum in Abuja, Nigeria, President Kagame answered: “There was no alternative. We had to do it because, looking back in time for our country, we sank so low that there was no lower point to go. The only way to...

Friday, August 2, 2019, 12:00 AM

Can Rwanda’s tall buildings turn into Intore dancers during earthquakes?

So, there you are, cosily sitting, standing, walking, or whatever, because you are on solid ground, right? Well, wrong! It’d seem the ground under your feet is as shifty as they come. “Shifty”, mind you, not in the sense of rotating around the sun, no, sir/madam. Rather, in the...

Friday, July 26, 2019, 12:00 AM

The killers of our kin, is their goose as good as cooked?

Me, I smell a big rat – a strong-tanged one at that. We’ve all lately heard stories of some Rwandan dissidents in the jungles of D.R Congo not having a good time of it. Methinks the stories are turning out to be more than reliable. They may be reality playing out. Looks like the...

Friday, July 19, 2019, 12:00 AM

The burden of a name

Sylvestre Semajeri, my well-known homeboy, was back in town and even bubblier. Hardly had he greeted me than he enthused: “As we’d promised, we gave our daughter’s hand in marriage.” “Who is ‘we’ who ga –”, I tried to enquire but he irritably...

Friday, July 12, 2019, 12:00 AM

The toxic, tsunamic turbulence crests this liberation ship has had to ride

AS RWANDANS revel in the euphoria of commemorating 25 years of liberation, never should the seemingly insurmountable turbulences encountered on the way to this place escape their minds. The state of this nation today described as a dramatic turnaround? When one deeply ponders it, “amazing...

Friday, July 5, 2019, 12:00 AM

Discredited everywhere, they seek solace in celebrating Turquoise

The mockery of it all! Some of those who formed the disgraceful 1994 Opération Turquoise recently congratulating themselves over a job well done? At a time that their leadership has seen better to turn the page and embrace productive, collaborative engagement with Rwanda? No doubt, for their...

Friday, June 21, 2019, 12:00 AM

If someone’s wishes were power, Rwanda would be an Abkhazia

It’s unlikely you’ve ever heard of the name Abkhazia. It’s even more unlikely that you’d hazard a guess as to whether it’s the name of a country. Most probably your guess would be that the name belongs to one of those terrorists that so frequently flow off the lips of...

Friday, June 14, 2019, 12:00 AM

To be spurred forward, let none forget where they’re coming from

An old veteran of this city, losing my way on one of its streets? Incredible! Yet that’s exactly what happened the other evening at the Sonatube roundabout, on the road from the city centre through Rwandex to the airport. I found myself headed for Kicukiro Centre, instead, when my...

Friday, June 7, 2019, 12:00 AM

Pray, is Rwanda responsible for Museveni’s wounded ego?

You’ve seen it all over the social media. A snapshot of President Paul Kagame seemingly taking a snap chance to engage Ugandan President Yoweri K. Museveni in a ‘conversation’ at the swearing-in ceremony of Cyril Ramaphosa as South African president. I’d eagerly give my...

Friday, May 31, 2019, 12:00 AM

Rwanda is on the up and up; officials should not let her down

Rwanda being Africa’s second most popular destination for hosting international conferences and events, after South Africa? This is a coup for this country, if ever there was one. She has sprung many surprises before, true. But if it’s possible to clinch this position when a mere...

Friday, May 24, 2019, 12:00 AM