Nyakinama, 23 July 2012

Today in Nyakinama, President Kagame inaugurated the first ever Rwanda Defense Force Command and Staff College. The college aims to ensure that senior officers are trained in a locally relevant context and able to build upon the homegrown doctrine that defines the Rwanda Defense Force.

Launching the ceremony, Brig. Gen Jack Mupenzi welcomed the guests and explained that the training provided by the college will be centered on professional conduct, academic achievement and teamwork. Minister of Defense, James Kabarebe added that Rwanda Defense Force has become an integral part of the national and regional security and a responsible member of global community.

President Kagame began his address by reminding all present that this day “shows how far we have come in constantly improving the force our country needs and deserves…what has made RDF different is the emphasis on training based on clarity of purpose, competence, integrity, sense of identity and ethical conduct.” President Kagame added that these values were the reason for RDF’s success and respect on the international scene.

Referring to the ongoing crisis in Eastern DRC, President Kagame told the guests that the current pressures on Rwanda are based on wrong reasons and should give Rwandans the positive energy to become “better fighters for our future.We know our problems, we are genuine about finding solutions but the international community wants to pretend some people don’t matter. We will continue to partner with others but we must stay who we are as we struggle to transform Rwanda.” President Kagame added.

President Kagame challenged future graduates of Rwanda Defense Force Command and Staff College to prepare to continuously question ways of thinking that seek to reduce Rwanda to “third world” country. “It’s not enough to learn if you are not going to use it to transform our country, people and institutions,” President Kagame concluded.