Kagame made the advice yesterday speaking to over 3000 youth at Intare Conference Arena in Rusororo, Gasabo district in conversations dubbed ‘MeetThePresident’.
The conversation which involves the youth from different levels of employment, students, and nationals from the diaspora among others revolved around different national development programs.
Kagame reminded them of values that should characterize the youth where he advised them against outsourcing foreign cultures but rather stick to Rwandan values.
While advising the youth to develop a critical thinking spirit and be selective while making choices, he pointed out an example of a grazing cow that avoids thorny grasses.
“Even when a cow is grazing, it chooses what it eats. It is selective about the type of grass, it does not just eat everything that is green. It avoids the ones with thorns. It is the same for youth, you need to be selective, you need to choose what builds you personally and what will enable you to build the society around you. Don’t just accept anything,” advised Kagame.
President Kagame talked on foreign countries relentlessly dictating African countries and highlighted that it is impossible for Rwanda because it is concerned with own choices.
“I also think some of these people have no right whatsoever to look down upon people. If we are to create a Rwanda that we want, that we feel is good for us, who is this little somebody who comes to say this is what you should be having, this is what is good for you or what isn’t,” he said.
“I turn around and say do you want me to tell you what is good or not for you? One thing that I tell them that is not good for them is to come and tell me what is not good for me,” added Kagame.
He told the youth that discussions would be a waste of time if they don’t develop the mindset of not doing things because to impress anybody else.
“ If we don’t develop the mindset that all these things we are trying to achieve are good for us, that we are not doing this because we want to impress anybody, then everything else we discussed, impressive as it was, will be wasted,” said Kagame.
He further explained that Rwanda has a lot of things to do but won’t be manipulated to work with intentions to impress others.
“We are still far from where we want to be but surely we don’t want to be where other people want us to be,” emphasized Kagame.
The President also criticized recent publications of Financial Times that Rwanda fabricates figures of people under the line of poverty highlighting that it is against the truth.
“I will bet with anyone that there is actually nothing fake or fabricated or doctored about the progress we are making. If anyone is saying we still have problems to deal with, then they are right because there are still many challenges we have to deal with. We are dealing with them and we will deal with them. There is nothing new about Rwanda having problems, and all of us working together to make a difference for ourselves,” he said.
The conversations held yesterday aimed at giving the youth an insight into Rwanda’s ‘Vision 2050’ to fats track Rwanda’s development.