KIGALI - President Paul Kagame has hailed the achievements recorded in 2009 in different sectors and appealed to Rwandans to focus on consolidating the gains as we move into the New Year.
In his traditional New Year message, President Kagame said that 2009 saw the country take significant steps both on the national and international stage.
Kagame pointed out that the country has earned respect and recognition on the international level for its various bold policies implemented with high levels of transparency.
“With regard to good governance, we placed great emphasis on the fight against corruption and other vices that hamper development.
This is a struggle in which every Rwandan must take part, otherwise our leadership may lose its grounding and the whole country will be in disarray,” Kagame said.
He said that the country has scored high in various sectors and commended all Rwandans for the hard work exhibited, urging them to continue with the same spirit to address the challenges that lie ahead.
“We should take satisfaction that as we finish the year, our country is in good shape, and that we will continue to work together to solve the remaining challenges.”
He singled out the agriculture sector as one of the areas the country has performed well by ensuring self-sufficiency in food production and improving lives of millions of Rwandans who depend on it.
The President also cited the country’s top ranking in the World Bank’s Doing Business Report last year saying it would boost investments in the country.
“We must therefore do all we can to ensure that this “number one” position is not only in name, but make use of the merit to improve the way we conduct business, develop our small and medium enterprises and our cooperatives, in order to create real prosperity for Rwandans,” the President said.
He also singled out the move by Rwandans to come together and help in the construction of schools for the Nine Year Basic Education programme (9YBE) and the One Dollar campaign as two activities that “demonstrate that with determination, Rwandans are capable of achieving anything they set their minds to.”
On the international level, President Kagame said that 2009 will be remembered as a year which Rwanda joined the Commonwealth group of nations and cemented the processes of integration within EAC.
“I urge all Rwandans to work hard, especially those in the private sector. We need to take advantage of the opportunities that accrue from membership in these communities, particularly the enlarged market where Rwandans can invest and sell their products,” Kagame said.