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Rwanda-China Alumni Comforts Chinese People Over Coronavirus

by Dan Ngabonziza
6:09 pm

In the wake of rapid spreading of the deadly Coronavirus epidemic, the association of Rwandan students who studied in different universities in China has teamed up to share their message of comfort and hope as China and the World grapple with the epidemic.

By press time, live updates from World Health Organisation (WHO) indicated that Coronavirus cases had passed to 115,000 worldwide.

A Belgian was tested positive yesterday in Rwanda’s neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). In a video taken at Kigali Arena in Gasabo district in the capital Kigali, the Rwanda-China Alumni Organisation encouraged Chinese people to stay strong and fight the epidemic.

“During this Coronavirus outbreak, we Rwanda-China Alumni Organisation would like to express our solidarity with our Chinese friends and encourage them to fight against this epidemic,” said Theoneste Higaniro – the organisation’s Chairman.

“We remain confident that Chinese government and Chinese people will win this battle,” he added.

“During this outbreak of COVID-19, I keep in my heart all my friends and teachers in China and I think about you every day. China CDC was able to quickly detect COVID-19. With a lot of hope, I am very confident that China is capable to contain this epidemic of COVID-19. Stay strong China,” said Dr Menelas Nkeshimana – head of Emergency department at the University Teaching Hospital of Kigali (CHUK). He is also a Rwanda-China Alumni Organisation.

Amid Coronavirus outbreak, people in different parts of China have been advised stay indoors.

Rwanda China Alumni Organization (RCAO) is a Non-Governmental founded by former graduates from China. Its members are all those who graduated from China and those who attended training from Chinese Institutions at least for three Months, according to Gakiza Canisius, the organisation’s Secretary.

The organization has 650 members who work closely with Chinese Embassy in Rwanda where they venture into several projects, Gakiza told KT Press.

“We work closely with Chinese embassy where we run several projects such as supporting genocide survivors, helping in rehabilitation of genocide memorials and many others. Currently, we are helping the community to adopt the use of online government services,” he said.

According to Gakiza, “Not every Rwandan who studied in China is a member of our organization, but we are always ready to receive anyone willing to join.”

Under Rwanda-China academic partnership, Rwandans have shown a growing appetite of acquiring extra professional skills in China, with more trainees who fly to China for human resource training programs increasing by 50% since 2015.

In 2015, 86 trainees flew to China for training. In the following years, the number increased to 127 and 187 trainees in 2017. In the same scenario, the number increased to about 400 trainees last year from 248 in 2018, according to the figures presented by the Chinese embassy in Rwanda during the Human resource trainings workshop held at Serena Hotel in December last year.

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