Eastern Province, 27May 2011
President Kagame today visited Nyagatare district, where he was conducted around different projects undertaken by the district and provincial authorities. The President also met and interacted with residents of Nyagatare and surrounding districts, before officially opening a retreat for the Eastern province business community organized by the Private Sector Federation.
While addressing hundreds of Nyagatare residents at the Umutara Polytechnic grounds, President Kagame noted that the district has achieved a lot in the past 10 years: “Concerted efforts by government, with the involvement of the people have yielded what you see now. From infrastructure to social welfare, Nyagatare has been transformed from one of the most disadvantaged and impoverished districts, to one of the wealthiest in the country. This confirms the fact that when people put their efforts together, there is nothing impossible.”
The President reflected on the past when the district was afflicted by many challenges including the influx of people returning from exile and long dry spells which affected agricultural production. He said that today, the main task of the district is planning for more and more prosperity for its people since most the challenges have been addressed: “The most difficult phase is behind us now. The progress in Nyagatare district is evident and should provide the basis to do more, since the foundation is already in place”.
President Kagame pointed out that efforts by government to increase agricultural production are aimed at benefiting all Rwandans, and that since food security has been achieved, the next target should be to produce surplus for export. The President pledged support by government to the district to modernize agriculture by providing electricity, infrastructure and water conservation projects to support irrigation. He emphasized that afforestation would be enforced since it had been noted that tree planting was not being accorded the seriousness it deserves.
Later in the day, President Kagame officially opened a retreat for the Eastern Province business community organized by the Private Sector Federation in collaboration with the Eastern Province. In his remarks, the President commended the business community for their support to government programmes like One Cow per Family initiative and the eradication of grass thatched house-holds: “As the country attracts foreign investors, Rwandans who choose to invest domestically are considered as priority because they are the pillars of the economy.”
The President also visited a mega rice farming project in Tabagwe sector that is set to take off at the end of the year. He also visited Elisa Mugiraneza, a model farmer who, through hard work and innovation has transformed his land into a successful farming business.