Former African Development Bank President, Rwanda’s Donald Kaberuka has said that capacity of economic super powers has declined which is giving Africa an opportunity to rise.
Doctor Donald Kaberuka is on panel discussing global trends at the second Day of Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF) Inkotanyi at Rusororo, Gasabo district.
Kaberuka brought back the history of the world hegemony where eight countries came together to decide world politics and markets, in a group commonly known as G8.
The list, later on extended to include 20 countries with only South Africa from the African continent.
“I attended many of these conferences, but to be sincere with you, Africa is not represented,” Kaberuka said to the surprise of the audience.
“However, there is good news – hegemony of those countries has diminished and Africa can seize this opportunity to rise.”
Kaberuka said that some move Africa has taken is the way to go.
He cited the case of African Union reforms that intends to bring self-reliance for the continent, an assignment that was given to President Paul Kagame.
“Your Excellency, I remember when AU took that decision. You were not there but they found you the right person who can drive the change,” Kaberuka said.
Rwanda is well positioned in this move. Kaberuka said, Rwanda’s move to ICT was criticized by the world, while thinking that, the country was good only for agriculture.
Rwanda has made strong moves in ICT, with 4G internet, digitizing public services, to mention but a few.
Rwanda hosts headquarters of cyber security in Africa and President Kagame Kagame is widely branded ‘digital president’ for his tireless efforts to promote Information and Communication Technology.
Kagame is a co-chair of the Broadband Commission that engages in high-level advocacy to promote broadband in developing countries and under served communities.
Meanwhile, Kaberuka said, the choice of ICT was a predictive move and Rwanda should make it a principle to look at things with a large perspective.
At the same panel, Louise Mushikiwabo, minister of Foreign affairs said, that “it is high time Africa leaves petty politics and engage in serious business to catch up in this economic move.”
Mushikiwabo expressed sadness at how an African country closes its air space against its neighbor, but opens it for other countries.
She said this undermines African efforts to develop.
For Francis Gatare CEO in Rwanda Mines, Petroleum, and Gas Board, Made in Rwanda will push the country further in this drive to develop Africa.
Another interesting panellist of today was Dr. Clet Niyikiza, CEO and President of L.E.A.F. Pharmaceuticals LLC.
The company is a global pharmaceutical company located in the historic area of Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, USA, with a mission to discover, develop and commercialize innovative and safe therapies for cancer.
Niyikiza said that Rwanda can push further this made in Rwanda drive.
The pharmacist with more than two doctorates mentioned some traditional medicinal plant, like ‘Inyabarasanyi’ which used to help Rwandan fighters in ancient Rwanda to cure wounds.
“We can develop our own medicine made in Rwanda here from that plant,” he said.
Similarly, Niyikiza mentioned the history of anesthesia which is produced from anaesthetic substances of the toad.
“We have plenty of toads in our country,” he said.
All it takes for the country, he said, is to make serious drive in research.
Meanwhile, in August 2017, Niyibizi announced establishment of L.E.A.F. Rwanda Ltd. (L.E.A.F. Rwanda), a biotechnology company, headquartered in Kigali, Rwanda.
L.E.A.F. Rwanda, a fully owned subsidiary of L.E.A.F. Pharmaceuticals, will focus on establishing Rwanda as a hub for biotechnology Research and Development (R&D) as well as pharmaceutical manufacturing in Africa.
Worries that Rwanda’s development is only a dream because the country is small and does not have plenty of natural resources were dismissed in the meeting.
Kaberuka said Mongolia has plenty of natural resources but it still needs a lot in development. “Mindset, tolerance spirit, avoiding conflicts is the way to go”.