HUYE – Alphonse Umulisa, the new Director General of the Institute of National Museums of Rwanda, (INMR), Wednesday, assumed office with a pledge to market the institute and involve local communities in museum activities.
Umulisa, who previously worked at the Museum of London in the UK among other places, expressed his readiness to propel the institute to a higher level during a hand-over ceremony witnessed by Culture and Sports Minister, Joseph Habineza.
He replaces Prof Célestin Kanimba.
“I am honoured and privileged to be working with the Institute of National Museums, I have the energy, the motivation, the experience and knowledge and I want to learn as well,” Umulisa said.
He said that the national Museums offer great tourism potential which has to be exploited by adopting a vigorous marketing strategy that will attract local and international visitors.
He commended his predecessor, Prof. Kanimba for the great work done but hastened to add that there are more opportunities to exploit.
“A lot more needs to be done in marketing the opportunities provided by the museum, we need to involve the community more,” said Umulisa.
Minister Habineza introduced to the workers the new Board of Directors of the institute that were recently appointed by Cabinet.
The seven-member board is headed by Dr Ivan Twagirishema. Other members include; Rica Rwigamba, the head of the Tourism department at the Rwanda Development Board, Carole Karemera of Ishyo Arts Centre and Nadine Keza.
Habineza said that the board is a blend of experienced people from various backgrounds who are business oriented.
He called for innovativeness on the part of workers in making the National Museum more attractive for local and international visitors.
“The challenge before you is to deliver, we are optimistic that the new leadership will bring change, and you have to be ready to adapt to this change,” Habineza told the museum staff.
The IMNR boasts of seven museums in different parts of the country. These include; the Living History Museum, Rwesero Art Museum, Rukari Ancient History Museum, Kandt House and the soon to be opened Kibuye Museum among others.
The National Museum in Butare receives over 1500 visitors monthly, according to officials.