Rwamagana, 19 July 2012

President Kagame and former US President Bill Clinton who was accompanied by his daughter Chelsea Clinton, were in Eastern Province today where they first visited Mont Meru Soyco Plant. Established in 2007 when the Clinton Hunter Development Initiative (CHDI) had the idea of starting an Integrated Edible oil plant in Rwanda, the plant will cost about 15million dollars.

President Kagame, President Clinton then toured Nyagatovu Integrated Development Program, a model village set up for the promotion of integrated socio-economic development in Rwanda. Before the project was introduced, 2400 of the beneficiaries lived in dilapidated housing. The model village was launched almost three years ago with an initial plan to build 50 houses, but now has 85 houses with 422 inhabitants over a total land area of 7Ha. There are 5 model villages in all the provinces including Kigali.

The Rwamagana School of Nursing and Midwifery (RSNM) was the last site to be visited by President Kagame, President Clinton and Chelsea. The school was established by the Catholic Church in 1962 and currently has a student population of 218, of which 123 are training in nursing and 95 in midwifery.

President Kagame thanked President Clinton, for his continuous support which through his organization the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), has been supporting the Ministry of Health to address the challenge of human resources in the health sector.

In his speech to the students President Clinton said:

Since 94, life expectancy in Rwanda has doubled; 90% children are immunized, maternal mortality has dropped by 60%. Over 90% HPV vaccinated compared to 26% in USA and per capita income has increased 5 times. Rwanda did not get here by accident, you had a vision of a country where everyone counts and every child has equal opportunity. Your country has a strategy and owes its progress to the leadership: I believe under this leadership people will be coming from all over the world to receive health care. The government of Rwanda asked for assistance to build quality health system that can be run without a single cent from foreign aid: A large percentage of most foreign aid goes to organizations from donor countries and very little is spent to benefit people. I believe that in seven years, Rwanda will be running a quality health system without foreign aid.

President Clinton is in the country on a two day working trip, yesterday he inaugurated the Butaro Cancer Center of Excellence (COE) – the first national cancer referral facility in rural Rwanda.