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Nicolas Sarkozy Says Kagame Is Africa’s Strong Leader, Snubs China


Former French president, Nicholas Sarkozy, has referred to Paul Kagame as a strong and visionary leader for both Rwanda and Africa.

Sarkozy has been praising Kagame since January this year, when he was in Rwanda with a group of French investors to explore investment opportunities in the country with French multinational firm Bollore, and its executive, Cyrille Bollore.

He was the first French president to visit Rwanda after the 1994 Genocide Against the Tutsis on February 25, 2010.

At that time, Sarkozy even admitted that French politicians played a role in the genocide through Opération Turquoise.

In an interview with Le point, a weekly newspaper, Sarkozy 63, who was president of France between 2007 and 2012 reiterated many points including the one where he was asked whether Africa has strong leaders.

He first talked about two the heads of state, Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara whom he referred to as a pacifist leader as well as Senegal President Macky Sall.

“I have liked Paul Kagame, the president of Rwanda, a lot. It takes extraordinary efforts to rehabilitate a country like Rwanda that had been torn apart by the genocide. Kigali is now the most connected city in Africa in terms of technology,” he said.

He said that Rwanda has made significant paces regarding reconciliation after the problems that the country went through.

“I can confirm that he (Kagame) is a visionary leader for both his country and Africa. He is now the president of the African Union, and has big ideas for it. He knows where he is leading his country,” He said.

In the interview, Sarkozy also snubbed the Chinese and said that the African continent today is host to great things not because of the arrival of Chinese, but rather because of what Africans are continuously building for themselves.

Sarkozy added that today, the African continent is not comprised of only 54 countries, but rather of more than 50 cities which are continuously crossing colonial boundaries. He observes this as an opportunity because it rides out ethnical problems.

Sarkozy was also asked about the leadership of current French President, Emmanuel Macron, to which he chose not to comment on.

Instead, he said that, “Let us give him time. French people will express their choice in the next election. The only thing I wish for our country is just good things.”

Asked about how a good leader should be, in his view, he said “In order to lead a country, it requires someone who is visionary. They have to know where they are going in order to plan how they may reach there,” he said.

This interview follows a few days after an appellate court in Paris confirmed that Sarkozy be arraigned before court on corruption charges during the 2012 presidential campaign in a case that has been described as “Bygmalion”.

It adds to another case where Sarkozy received money contrary to the law during his presidential campaign in 2007.


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