The just-concluded 27th African Union Summit in Kigali, that attracted well over 3000 delegates from across the continent, including up to 35 Heads of State and Government, was the biggest gathering of thought leaders and experts the country had ever hosted.
The Summit was declared a huge success even before its closing session, with the Chairperson of the African Union Commission Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, yesterday, describing it on her Twitter handle as “the best Summit we’ve had”.
And, addressing the media in Kigali, yesterday, a day after the closure of the historic summit, Foreign Affairs Louise Mushikiwabo rightly observed that the Summit had been “very productive” because it addressed “real issues” facing the African continent.
That the AU Summit took place at the magnificent Kigali Convention Centre, whose completion embodies the story of Rwanda’s rise from ashes, in a neighborhood that had become a beehive of construction activity in the run-up to the meeting to avoid major traffic disruptions around the area during the Summit, speaks to the determination of the people of Rwanda and the fruits of embracing a resilient spirit.
But, while it is in order for Rwandans to revel in the successful hosting of a very fruitful African Union Summit, that, among others, saw the historic launch of the African Passport and adoption of key reforms designed to make the Union self-reliant and financially independent, it is important that Rwandans draw inspiration from this feat to aim higher – individually and collectively – for greater accomplishments in the days ahead.
There is no dream that’s too big to achieve as long as you commit yourself to it and consistently make the most of every opportunity to achieve it. You may not succeed overnight but ultimately you’ll triumph.
After all, you are better off when you take a step forward than sit back.
Indeed, Rwanda’s accomplishments should not only inspire those seeking to learn from us, but Rwandans should be the first ones to draw good lessons to build a better future for themselves, communities and country.
The successful hosting of the AU Summit should motivate us to work even harder to achieve future goals.