Two significant announcements by the Government of Rwanda have a potential significant impact on the country’s future; the proposal for Rwanda to borrow up to one billion USD to finance the construction of the proposed Bugesera International Airport, and a few days before, the reshuffling and consolidation of Rwanda’s administrative staff across all ministries.
Rwanda realises that nearly 40 per cent of its budget is from external financing which in the current climate is continually subject to global whimsy.
The Government seems willing to fund the airport as it did with ICT infrastructure projects in a move that’s counter-intuitive to external, conventional wisdom as it advances its development plans forward.
This takes both visionary leadership and creative staff in all areas, top-down.
Rwanda recognises that to achieve its development agenda it needs highly competent civil servants and businesses that can think outside the box.
Yet managerial and entrepreneurial gaps are global. Post-secondary institutions have been tapped to try to close these gaps. But academic institutions, in their own management, are lagging indicators. Rwanda needs a bold effort to execute its vision effectively.
The restructuring at the government level is an excellent opportunity to both review programmes and to creatively and selectively cull programmes that don’t meet the bold vision (beyond EDPRS II) of the executive leadership. It also means that current programmes may need new and creative realignment and execution.
It may suggest that the Government does what successful corporations have done, which is to use savings from re-organisation to bring in executive coaching at the highest levels to support and improve the entrepreneurial skills needed for Rwanda’s long-term future. This requires a shift to competency and creative entrepreneurial risk.
In the current global economic climate, community vision needs to be congruent with executive vision.
Dr. Tom Abeles, Rwanda