Tanzania’s President John Pombe Magufuli is today expected in Rwanda for a two-day working visit.
This will be his first visit to the country since he was elected into office in October.
During his visit, Magufuli is scheduled to inaugurate the Rusumo One-Stop-Border Post, a key installation designed to ease trade between the two neighbours under the auspices of the Central Corridor.
The Central Corridor is one of the main two trading routes for Rwanda and links the country to Tanzania’s Dar es Salaam port on the Indian ocean. Up to 60 per cent of Rwanda’s cargo goes through this port.
President Magufuli is also scheduled to join the people of Rwanda in activities to mark the beginning of the 22nd commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
The weeklong commemoration period begins Thursday, April 7, and will see Rwandans around the country and abroad as well as the international community pay tribute to the more than a million lives lost during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
Magufuli is expected to pay respect to those who lost their lives in the Genocide by laying a wreath at the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre.
Following his election in October, President Magufuli has since garnered popularity especially among anti-corruption activists for cracking down on corruption, curbing wasteful public spending and prioritizing efficiency in public service delivery.
Magufuli’s visit is expected to further strengthen the existing bilateral relations between the two EAC member states, according to officials.
Speaking to journalists shortly after meeting President Kagame in February in Kigali, Tanzanian Foreign Affairs minister Dr Augustine Mahiga said that the two countries are committed to a new path of bilateral cooperation.
His Rwandan counterpart, Louise Mushikiwabo, said that both nations were better off when united.
“Rwanda and Tanzania discuss frankly and agree on what they want to do together as we look to a better future for our people,” she said.
Presidents Kagame and Magufuli last met in March in Tanzania during the 17th East African Community (EAC) Heads of State Summit.