Today marks an important day in the history of this nation. Looking 15 years back, no one would have predicted that Rwanda would be the country that it is today.
The nation had everything that qualified it to be a failed state.
Over a million people had been mercilessly murdered, socio-economic structures were in disarray, infrastructure was dilapidated, institutions almost nonexistent, our people had lost a sense of being.
But that is buried in the past now.
Tremendous work has been done to restore our dignity as a nation. The people of Rwanda are motivated today by a leadership firmly rooted in good governance and the rule of law.
We pride in a nation whose economy is growing at a rate above the continental average. We cherish our political path defined by the belief in diversity, consensus building and power sharing among our political institutions.
We celebrate a future for our children who previously had no hope for an education because of discrimination and poverty.
We acknowledge a healthy nation riding on home grown initiatives like Mutuelles de santé, an all encompassing and popular health insurance scheme.
But above all, we treasure the peace and security that each and every citizen of this nation enjoys.
As we celebrate, we are humbled by young men and women who 15 years ago hatched the plan to liberate Rwanda from the cold blooded regime that was bent on exterminating a portion of its population.
But we are also reminded that the journey to full liberation remains a far fetched one. As Rwandans, we need to liberate ourselves from poverty by adding value to whatever we produce.
We need to liberate ourselves from the culture of dependency by adopting an innovative and competitive mindset, producing products that can survive the ever growing and aggressive market place.
We need to stamp out the root causes of genocide and rise from the ashes of our ugly past as we build a strong cohesive nation.
The foundation has been laid and the onus is on each and every Rwandan to drive forward this vision.