Kagame delivers State of the Nation Address, warns security threat architects

On 27 December 2021 at 05:44

President Paul Kagame has said that the State of the Nation remains strong despite the fact that the country is ending the second year in challenging times of COVID-19 pandemic.

Kagame made the remarks today as he delivered the State of the Nation Address.

It is usually delivered during the annual National Dialogue Council ‘Umushyikirano’ which was recently canceled for the second time.

The President said that the country managed challenges related to security, health and economy in 2021.

To protect Rwandans against emerging health threats, Kagame said that the country has so far vaccinated 80% of its population who received at least one dose of COVID-19.

He thanked all those who have been involved in the critical exercise, including partners who have provided vaccines and other support.

The Head of State revealed that Rwanda’s economy experienced strong growth which the country expected to sustain.

Among others, Kagame thanked farmers for their contribution to sufficient food reserves, urged recently elected local leaders on efficient service delivery and warned security threat architects noting that whoever intends to destabilize Rwandans’ security will be held accountable.

Full speech

We have come to the end of the second year of living with COVID-19 pandemic.

Our country has had to learn fast, and adjust to the new challenges of this health threat as it evolves,. However , we have made a good progress and the state of our nation remains strong.

I want to thank all Rwandans for your hard work, and commitment to the development and wellbeing of each other and of our country, particularly, during these challenging times.

This year, Rwanda has had to manage many challenges, including in the health, economic and security sectors.

One important way that we have sought to protect Rwandans, is through comprehensive nationwide vaccination against COVID-19.

So far, 80% of our population aged 12 years and above, have received at least one vaccine dose.

We thank all those who have been involved in this critical exercise, including our partners who have provided vaccines and other support.

Going forward, we must be more self-reliant, and better prepared for future shocks.

This is why we are partnering with the African Union and the European Union as well as other companies like BioNTech, to manufacture vaccines and other pharmaceuticals in Rwanda starting next year.

As a result of prudent decisions made this year, Rwanda’s economy experienced strong growth which we expected to sustain.

The Economic Recovery Fund, totalling Rwf100 billion Rwandan Francs so far has allowed the most affected businesses including the tourism, and hospitality sector to stay open, and keep Rwandans employed.

We have mobilized additional funds for the second phase of this program which will support existing investments, and new ones.

I want to take this opportunity to thank our tax payers, who continued to contribute to Rwanda’s economic development, despite the pandemic. COVID-19 has reinforced the linkage between technology and economic growth.

Rwanda’s early investments in digitization, have proven to be an asset preventing our society from being crippled by this pandemic and future ones.

We encourage all Rwandans, especially our young people, to continue to innovate and create solutions for the challenges of today and tomorrow.

After many disruptions, Rwandan schools reopened. And stayed opened for a significant part of this year.

Students were able to sit for national exams during the lockdown, and move on to the next phase of their education.

Local Government elections took place after being postponed.

We now expect a lot form the elected officials, the most important being service delivery to citizens

The agriculture sector continues to be key, contributing 25% to the national economy in 2021.

Rwanda remains food secure, with sufficient reserves.

I would like to thank our farmers for their resilience in these times , despite the many challenges in travel and gathering,

Rwanda was able to host important events this year, including the inaugural Basketball Africa League , amongst other meetings.

A significant factor in Rwanda’s continued economic progress, is our strong collaboration with partner institutions and countries , Regional and continental integration, remains at the forefront of our agenda.

We are strengthening existing bilateral ties, with countries in our region and beyond as well as exploring new, mutually beneficial areas of cooperation.

This includes partnerships to address security challenge, including in Central African Republic and Mozambique.

Rwanda is able to pursue these forms of cooperation because the security and stability of our country, is assured and remains a top priority,

Part of this, is ensuring that anyone who threatens the safety and security of Rwandans, is brought to justice and held accountable.

Let us continue working together, and build on what we have already achieved.

I wish you, and your loved ones, a peaceful, healthy and happy end of year.

I thank you!

President Paul Kagame has thanked all those who have been involved in the critical exercise to roll out vaccination program to Rwandans, including partners who have provided vaccines and other support.