Rwandan Contingent serving under the United Nations-African Union Hybrid Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) Sudan, celebrated the 20th Rwanda’s Liberation Anniversary under the theme “Together we prosper”.
In a colourful ceremony, the Peacekeepers were joined with UNAMID Officials, Sudanese Government Officials, Sudanese Armed Forces Officials, Local community leaders and Rwandan Community living in Sudan.
The events took place on 4th July 2014 in El Fasher and Zalingei in Darfur, Sudan.
In El Fasher, Maj Gen Balla Keita the UNAMID Deputy Force Commander who was the guest of Honor of the day recalled in his speech that the celebration was about the remembrance of the past struggle that united the people of Rwanda.
Gen Keita further highlighted that the people of Rwanda have understood that the liberation is a process whose main objectives must be uniting the people and ensuring their wellbeing, all based on good and accountable governance.
He commended the progress Rwanda has achieved in only twenty years. “In fact (Rwanda) has made an extra-ordinary progress since 1994, and in just twenty years has transformed itself into one of the Africa’s most remarkable success stories”, said Gen Keita, before adding that the liberation sacrifices are the seeds from which the new Rwanda grows.
“You have demonstrated that your humanity and professionalism have led you to the achievements you are celebrating today”, Maj Gen Balla Keita, observed.
In his remarks, Col Sam K Baguma the Rwanda Contingent Commander in Darfur reiterated that Rwanda Defence Forces, alongside fellow Rwandans, are now fighting poverty to achieve development.
He further noted that in the same sprit RDF peacekeepers deployed in UNAMID are fully committed to ensure Darfur citizens have security through mission mandate.
“In addition, we have come up with different initiatives where Rwandan soldiers have been involved in different activities like community work, medical care for IDPs, to mention but a few”, said Col Baguma.
In Zalingei, Lt Col Fred Rwanyamugabo the Rwanbatt38 Commanding Officer, after welcoming the guests, reminded the audience the theme of Liberation 20 “Kwibohora 20: Together we prosper” and the purpose of celebration.
In his speech, Lt Col Fred Rwanyamugabo highlighted the major headlines of bad governance Rwanda experienced since the colonial era which forced the exiled Rwandans to launch a campaign to liberate Rwanda, peaceful means having failed for several years.
In this regard, he recalled that the liberation struggle launched in 1990 aimed at restoring the right to citizenship for all Rwandans, regaining real independence, laying emphasis on good and accountable governance and establishing a true Rwandan nation defined by Rwandans.
“Today Rwanda stands as a new resilient nation of people defined and united by hope and common values”, Lt Col Rwanyamugabo observed.
He also reiterated that Rwandans have finally regained “Agaciro” (self-esteem), before concluding that celebrating Liberation reflected the road traveled by Rwandans during their liberation struggle.
The 20th Rwanda’s liberation Day celebrations in Sudan were marked by speeches, military parade and Rwandan traditional dance.