There is nothing to celebrate about getting independence from colonial masters, President Paul Kagame unhappily told a crowd of students in Huye this afternoon.
“Ask yourself, what we got out of our independence when we are still living off the wealth of others,” Kagame asked while addressing over 4000 students at the University of Rwanda’s college of arts and social sciences in the Southern Province.
Kagame said many African countries got independence from their colonial masters-mainly, but over 50 years down the line, all the African countries are still dependent on their former colonisers.
Rwanda, a Belgian colony, got its independence in 1962, but remained at the crossroads of bad leadership and achieved no social-economic transformation.
Kagame, who was in Huye district to mourn his relatives who were killed during the genocide against the Tutsi, said that he has not experienced change and economic transformation that Rwanda and Africa deserves.
“[Those] who give us aid today were where we were sixty years ago,” Kagame said. “But they learned from their history and transformed their nations.”
For 50years, he said, the methods of development have been the same and there has been no change. “The methods and mindset must change,” Kagame said.
He challenged the students to work harder and transform Rwanda. “We were created equal with equal capabilities. We are not missing anything to transform our nation. Being the cradle of humanity means there is something great within us.”
He told students to use their education and transform lives “Our universities should be teaching that Rwandans deserve better than being beggars and living off others.” “An education that does not transform your life or the life of others is a wasted education,” he said.