RE: “Rwandan culture is the glue that holds us together, says Kagame” (The New Times, September 26).
I was among a small group of Burundians who had traveled from afar to attend the Rwanda Cultural Day in Francisco, US, last Saturday, to show our appreciation to President Paul Kagame and the whole community of Rwanda for the support shown to Burundian refugees who were blessed to reach Rwanda.
We were touched by the spirit of unity among the Rwandans in the Diaspora. We were made greatly aware of the importance of the Rwandan culture in its role as the glue that keep Rwandans together, a culture that sustained them through many trials, and a culture that gives them strength and courage to press up after being “pressed hard and crushed like sisal”.
I personally learned that — as one of the thousands of Burundians who are not counted as such on our motherland — to “never give up”. I learned to never “stop dreaming”.
As a matter of fact, one of my dreams came through by seating in the same room as and hearing directly from President Kagame.
I was not given the opportunity to speak and express my gratitude and to ask one pressing question I had, but I came out encouraged and challenged to continue what I have been doing with young Burundians in Nakivale Refugee Camp, Uganda.
I was greatly touched by the stories President Kagame recounted about showing how unity held them Rwandan refugees together and the commitment to the family and to one another which are part of that rich culture we all got to enjoy last week in San Francisco.
Here are some of my favourite words and expressions from President Kagame: “Modern Africanisation vs. Westernisation” and “Radical Home-grown Solutions”.
Thank you, Your Excellency.