President Kagame has said he sees Rwanda’s future largely dependent on its youths, and rallied them to think about the country every second of their daily endeavors.
“Young people, When I see you, I see Rwanda,” Kagame said. He was today addressing over 700 Rwandan youths from across Canada and United States, during an event dubbed ‘Rwanda Youth Forum.’
Kagame, who spent over 30 years of his youthful life in exile due to ethnic conflicts in Rwanda, challenged the youths who gathered at Texas Christian University in Dallas, “You harbour immense opportunities within you.”
Youths represent 70% of Rwanda’s population of 11 million people.
Kagame, who led a liberation struggle that stopped the 1994 genocide against Tutsi, told the youths that, “The liberation that made Rwanda what it is today was done by young people like you.”
Rwanda has notably transformed its economy, from almost nothing to an 8% growth rate for the past two decades.
In achieving this, empowering youth has been a priority, through championing initiatives skills development in different sectors like ICT, infrastructure and agriculture, among others.
The education sector alone needs at least 341 PhD holders in science and technology related fields, 123 PhD holders in arts, humanities, and social sciences. There is need for 358 Masters holders in science and technology related fields and 104 Masters holders in arts, humanities, and social sciences. There is need for 8,212 TVET trainers, according to the ministry of Youths and ICT.
Aloys Zunguzungu, who featured on a panel alongside the President, is a beneficiary of Presidential Scholarship award.
A genocide orphan, Zunguzungu grew up in an orphanage, after losing all his parents during the 1994 genocide against Tutsi when he was just 4 years old.
Today, as he joined Kagame to challenge youths on Rwanda’s future economic prospects, he has initiated a project, ‘Rwandans4Water’.
The project has established 70 boreholes serving 350,000 families with access to clean water in rural Rwanda.
He says a borehole cost between $700 and $1000 to construct a, based on the terrain.
According to Zunguzungu, through funding from different international partners, his project pushed the percentage of access to clean water in rural communities from 20% to 60% in Gatsibo District alone.