The docket for Rwanda’s Minister of State in charge of the East African Community is active again after Prof. Nshuti Mannaseh took oath on Monday since his appointment to replace Olivier Nduhungirehe.
“I want to start by thanking those who have just taken their oath of office for accepting to continue serving our country, especially in these difficult times. I wish you well in your new endeavours,” President Paul Kagame said while officiating at the swearing in ceremony for new government officials.
President Paul Kagame on Monday presided over the swearing in ceremony at Village Urugwiro.
The Oath of office was taken by two new Ministers of State in the Ministry of Agriculture, Foreign Affairs Ministry. Others include; a new judge of the supreme court, the Vice President and two judges of the Court of Appeal, a Member of Parliament, and the Deputy Ombudsman.
Much focus will be on Prof. Nshuti’s handling of relations between Uganda, Burundi that had reached chilly levels.
Rwandans and Ugandans are still carefully tracking the progress on Gatuna border opening process.
President Paul Kagame of Rwanda and President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda met at Gatuna Border in February as part of implementing the Angola brokered peace agreement between their countries.
Both leaders said they had made their demands clear to each other and when conditions are met, relations should normalise and borders reopened within 45 days from the day of meeting at the border.
Unfortunately few weeks later, a global pandemic #COVID-19 launched its attacks from far East in China and by March 13th Rwanda fell in its trap leading to implementing measures aimed at containing it. Borders were shut down, airports closed and movements of people suspended.
Uganda has also recorded its first Covid19 case on March 21st thus imposing similar measures to prevent the spread of the virus further into the country.
Covid-19 pandemic gradually silenced the back and forth rhetoric between the two neighbours as both had gone into an overdrive as evidenced by tirade of accusations in media reports.
Anyone could notice that Foreign Affairs Ministries on both sides were experiencing high levels of pressure since March 2019 when Rwanda closed Gatuna Border and later issuing a travel advisory cautioning Rwandans against risking crossing to Uganda.
In April, Rwanda dropped Olivier Nduhungirehe from his job for “consistently acting based on personal opinions”.
“The President of the Republic has removed from office Ambassador Olivier Nduhungirehe for consistently acting based on personal opinions over Government policies, while serving as Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation in Charge of East African Community,” Prime Minister Edouard Ngirente said in the sacking letter.
The docket for Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation in Charge of East African Community remained vacant until May when President Paul Kagame appointed Prof. Manasseh Nshuti.
Below are some of the photos taken by the Presidency on Monday during the swearing in ceremony at Village Urugwiro.