STOCKHOLM- Rwanda’s Ambassador to Sweden, Venetia Sebudandi, yesterday called on Rwandans in the Nordic Countries to preserve the ethos that inspired the Rwandan Patriotic Army to end the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, 17 years ago, touching off a journey to Rwanda’s remarkable transformation.
She recalled that on July 4, 1994 the RPA defeated the genocidal forces and brought to an end the Genocide which claimed over one million Tutsis.
“The liberation was the beginning of a journey forward for Rwandans; for change and transformation and a search for more meaningful Independence and Freedom for the people of Rwanda,” Sebudandi said in a Liberation Day message to Rwandans in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland.
She noted that even after attaining political independence from colonial rule in 1962, Rwanda had in effect remained under the control of external influence, and successive regimes that were characterised by political and ideological bankruptcy—that promoted hatred, sectarianism and genocidal ideologies which culminated into the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi”.
Few countries, if any, have been through a history as tragic as ours. Fewer still, have undergone a recovery as rapid and comprehensive, she said.
Seventeen years ago, any prediction that Rwanda would be where it is today would have been deservedly dismissed by many as wishful thinking.
Sebudandi took stock of the record gains registered by Rwanda since the end of the genocide in “peace and security, economic growth, social welfare, political and democratic governance, national reconciliation and, above all, the restoration of dignity for Rwandans”.
Today Rwandans are committed to ensuring that they are at the centre of the planning processes and implementation of their development programs; that they build their own solutions to shape their own destiny.
Rwanda’s approach is vindicated by the interest many countries are showing in our development policies ranging from universal health insurance, women empowerment good governance, our national ICT policy, among a host of others”
She called upon members of the Rwandan Diaspora in the Nordic Countries to support the struggle for poverty eradication.
“Your skills and resources will go a long way in improving the lives of your families in Rwanda and the country in general. While you are doing that, you will also reap benefits from investing in one of Africa’s fastest growing economies”, said Sebudandi.
She paid tribute to Rwanda’s development partners for their support to the Government and people of Rwanda which she said has played a significant role in the country’s recent achievements.