President Paul Kagame is in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to attend the funeral of the late Ethiopian Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, who died on August, 21.
Several African Presidents, world leaders, diplomats and friends of the Late Zenawi from across the world are expected to attend.
Last evening, President Kagame paid his respects at the Grand Palace in Addis Ababa where he signed the condolence book and lay a wreath by the casket where the late Prime Minister lay in State.
Kagame will speak at the funeral along with former South African President Thabo Mbeki as friends of the late Prime Minister.
While sending his condolence message, President Paul Kagame described Zenawi, as a visionary leader who was committed to placing Africa in its rightful place in the World.
The former Premier passed on in a hospital in Belgium. He was 57.
“Zenawi was a visionary and gallant leader with a genuine concern for the socio-economical transformation of Ethiopia, and Africa as a whole – with a commitment for Africa’s rightful place in the world,” Kagame said in a condolence message to the government and people of Ethiopia, as well as the family of the late Zenawi.
President Kagame pointed out that Rwanda was “deeply appreciative of Prime Minister Zenawi’s exceptional friendship and continued partnership over the years, and expressed solidarity with Ethiopia during this period”.
Born in May 1955 in Tigray, Northern Ethiopia, Zenawi was widely considered a dedicated leader and freedom fighter, esteemed son of Africa who steered his country toward peace, prosperity and promise.
Since taking up power in his late 30s, Zenawi, a veteran fighter, dedicated his life to advancing the cause of Ethiopia and Africa’s liberation.
He led a liberation movement and became Prime Minister in 1991 after overthrowing a military junta led by Mengistu Haile Mariam
Deputy Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, 47, who has also been Foreign Minister since 2010, has taken over interim power.
Africa considered Zenawi as a visionary leader, since his passing, vigils have been held across the continent.