President Kagame swears in new leaders

President Kagame urged new leaders to always serve the interests of all Rwandans.

President Paul Kagame yesterday urged new leaders at the Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to work with commitment and always serve the interests of all Rwandans.

The Head of State delivered the message while officiating at the swearing in of Dr Claudine Uwera, the new Minister of State in charge of Economic Planning, and newly appointed leaders of Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB), who include Col Jeannot Ruhunga, the body’s Secretary General, and Isabelle Kalihangabo, its Deputy Secretary General.

“We are here to witness the swearing-in of senior officials in the Ministry of Finance and the justice sector. We thank these leaders for accepting these responsibilities and assure you of our cooperation,” Kagame said at the swearing-in event that took place at Parliament Buildings in Kimihurura.

He told the new leaders that they have to do their job with full commitment so that they can help the country to progress further as it aims to reverse a horrible past 24 years after the end of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

“Given our unique history and country, there are indicators that we can’t afford to underperform. We have to work with full commitment and always think about the citizens we serve. When we don’t work well it affects others, especially the Rwandans we serve. Our obligation is therefore to do well, do a good job in the interests of all citizens,” he said.

On Friday, President Kagame appointed Dr Uwera as the new Minister of State in charge of Economic Planning at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning  who she replaced Dr Uzziel Ndagijimana. Dr Ndahijimana was appointed minister of the ministry, replacing Amb. Claver Gatete who now heads the Ministry of Infrastructure.

Prior to her appointment, Dr Uwera was teaching environmental economics at the University of Rwanda’s College of Business and Economics.

She told The New Times in an interview yesterday that while the country has many economic challenges, she wants to focus on land and water resources management to meet the needs of an ever growing population.

“Rwanda is a country with a highly growing population and there are challenges in land management. We need to improve the way we manage land and water resources so that we can achieve sustainable development in the long term,” she said.

As for Ruhunga, who was until recently an acting head of military intelligence within the Rwanda Defence Force, and Kalihangabo, who was the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Justice, they will head an institution that is expected to improve Rwandans’ access to justice.

RIB will take over some of the technical and professional functions currently exercised by the Rwanda National Police, including judicial police functions; criminal and counter-terrorism investigation, crime intelligence, and economic and financial crimes investigation.

Ruhunga told The New Times that with RIB in place, the quality of investigations will improve because the body will be focused on conducting professional criminal investigations and that will be its only responsibility unlike the police that has many other obligations.

“We will try to be as professional as possible and we will focus on ensuring that the law is respected,” he said.

RIB will operate as a specialised public organ but will be under the oversight of the Ministry of Justice, just like the Rwanda National Police, Rwanda Correctional Services and the National Public Prosecution Authority, among other institutions.

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