London, 01 June, 2011

President Kagame has today been awarded the Chello Foundation Humanitarian Award 2011 for his “outstanding leadership of the Republic of Rwanda since 1994”- as described by the Chairman of the Chello Foundation, Shane O’Neill.

Under his leadership, Rwanda has become a nation that is globally recognized for its rapid socio-economic development as exemplified by its remarkable strides in providing equal access to quality education and health coverage to all Rwandans.

Today in Rwanda, 96% of girls and boys are enrolled under the universal primary education program, health coverage is at 91%, and intensified prevention and treatment programs for HIV/AIDS has led to a drop in prevalence from 11.2% to 3%.

Introducing President Kagame, Tony Blair described him as “an inspirational leader in Africa and for people around the world.  And I know in terms of what he’s done for his country’s economic development but also what he’s done to try to bring the country together after the extraordinary, divisive and terrible time Rwanda went through in the Genocide, it’s been a remarkable achievement.’

Accepting the award, President Kagame expressed what continues to drive Rwanda’s success, the belief in the kind of support that goes beyond sympathy and compassion and leads to self reliance. As he concluded, “this cause is the genuine and shared belief by all of us that every child – regardless of geography or nationality – should receive the best support so that they, in time, can help shape their country’s development and take control of their destiny. Let me say, however, that Africa cannot rely on the goodwill of others for ever. Nor does it want to. We must work together to ensure that the support we provide now is sustainable.”