Last weekend, the RPF held its 16th National Congress and celebrations for 35th Anniversary. Appointed as representative of the Communist Party of China (CPC), I am honored to join this fete and transmit our warm congratulations from the CPC to the RPF on this grand occasion.
Around three decades ago, the RPF led the courageous people into ending the tragedy and liberating the country. In thirty years of time, the world sees a new Rwanda with security, stability and vitality. The unremitting efforts have really made a miracle worthy of celebration.
This similar path from liberation to transformation reminds me of what my motherland has gone through. The CPC led comrades into winning the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression and the War of Liberation during the 1930s to 1940s, and building a new China through more than 70 years of exploration.
Although China and Rwanda are so different in size, population and culture, I have increasingly felt the similarity between our two countries, especially between our two ruling parties, the CPC and RPF.
First, all party members unite under the strong leadership. We all follow and keep in alignment with our leaders. In Rwanda, the whole nation persevere in a journey of transformation under the strong leadership of H.E. President Paul Kagame and the RPF. Members of the RPF and citizens of Rwanda heed the calls of leaders and bear a strong sense of duty in building a better Rwanda. Central and local government authorities are determined in policy implementation. And political parties cooperate for the good of the country rather than polarize over politics. The leadership breeds an impressive social cohesion and momentum forward.
While in China, the CPC central committee with President Xi Jinping at its core, lead the whole party march ahead. The centralized, unified leadership of the Central Committee is the highest principle of party-building. Party members defer to the central committee, uphold and strengthen the principle, and work to ensure top policies are fully implemented nationwide. This is also our hard-earned experience through a century of revolution and development.
Second, both parties put people at the first. We both aim to serve the people wholeheartedly and go for development of the country. The RPF has been working towards liberation, unity and democracy for people’s well-being.
As an example, I am particularly moved by the attitude of serving the people during the Umushyikirano, where the President and government officials engaged in frank talks with people and listened to their advice, followed by swift response of the executive branch. This special mechanism tells the world the story of people-centered governance.
It is the same in China. The CPC, with 90-million members, has no special interests of its own, except the interests of the state, the nation, and the people. Under the CPC’s leadership, China has grown from a country with $90 GDP per capita in the 1950s, to more than $12,000 per capita today, eradicating absolute poverty nationwide. Chinese People’s aspiration to live a better life is always the focus of the party’s efforts.
Third, we both independently explore our development paths suitable for our respective conditions. Rwanda is reborn and revitalized under the RPF’s unswerving efforts and clear vision. The distinct home-grown solutions deserve attention of the world, showing us that every country can take good care of its domestic affairs.
I always respect H.E. President Kagame for his insight and candidness in safeguarding Rwanda’s sovereignty and independence; like just recently, he said some people have turned democracy into a subjective tool to use on others. Indeed, every country is entitled to choose its own development paths and social systems. There is no universal model for a country in development and governance.
It is also China and the CPC’s strong belief that all countries are equal, and the development paths chosen by the peoples shall be respected. We stand firmly against any forms of interference in other countries’ internal affairs. This derives from our exploration during which the experiences learned from others are integrated with China’s specific realities and fine traditional culture.
The above-mentioned similarities may not capture the whole picture, yet they tell me how liked minded China and Rwanda are on the same path towards prosperity of our countries and the happiness of our peoples.
President Xi Jinping once wrote, China and Rwanda have developed a friendship “higher than mountains”. The two countries maintain excellent relationship with strong ties between the CPC and the RPF, frequent people-to-people exchanges in official and private sectors, booming bilateral trade and investment, and expanding collaboration in culture, education and other spheres. We are together walking into another 50 years of fruitful cooperation.
In this turbulent world and challenging time, we need to embrace a vision of a community with a shared future, and continue to strive for peace and development. The Chinese side stays committed to enhancing exchanges in governance, organization, development, and other areas with Rwanda and the RPF, to create a better future for our two peoples.
Wang Xuekun Chinese Ambassador to Rwanda