President Paul Kagame and First Lady Jeannette Kagame arrived Friday at the Kigali Convention Centre to join HRH Prince Charles and Commonwealth Heads of Government for the Opening Ceremony of CHOGM22 in Rwanda’s capital Kigali.
In his remarks to the delegates President Paul Kagame said, “We are united by a shared language whether English is our first, second, third, or even fourth one. But what really defines us, are the values enshrined in the Commonwealth Charter and the commitment to good governance.”
Throughout this week Commonwealth gatherings have attracted over 5000 guests, more than 50 world leaders, and 90 events in the East African country that has no previous colonial relationship with Britain.
Rwanda was admitted as 54th member to the Commonwealth in November 2009, during the biennial Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Trinidad and Tobago.
Before independence in 1962, Rwanda was under German then Belgian rule. As a Francophone country, it forged close ties with France during Francois Mitterrand’s presidency and has been rebuilding its economy after the 1994 genocide against Tutsi that killed more than a million people.
President Kagame worked hard to bring Rwanda into the English-speaking sphere in Africa after disagreements with France over events leading up to the 1994 Rwandan genocide against Tutsi.