Harvard professor louds Rwanda for entrepreneurial reforms
From 6-7th May 2016, Rwandaâ€™s Minister for Foreign Affairs Honorable Louise Mushikiwabo participated in the forth edition of the Retreat of the Executive Council in Nairobi.
The fourth Retreat of the Executive Council held at Radisson Hotel in Nairobi from 5-6 May 2016 was organized by the African Union Commission and hosted by the Government of Kenya in preparation of the 27th African Union (AU) Summit to be held in Kigali from 10-18 July 2016, Rwanda.
The retreat focused on the implementation of Agenda 2063 by examining the paradox of why a continent rich in natural resources yet stuck in the cycle of underdevelopment, with marginal contributions to global production.
Participants picked examples of some of African land locked and island including Rwanda that have overcome the paradox, without the benefit of mineral and energy resources. These examples were used, as tipping points required achieving Agenda 2063 goals.
During discussions, Ministers showed the need to ensure cohesion, unity of action and a Pan African mindset that will lead to committing to integration and sustainability, that puts the interests of the continent and the African people first.
Ministers did agree on the fact that integration in the sprit of Pan Africanism has to be at the centre of the Pan African project, throughout the different phases of African development particularly in the context of the mission of the African Union and Agenda 2063.
Speaking at the opening of this retreat, Amina Mohamed, Cabinet Secretary Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs of Kenya said that Kenya was delighted to host this important event, which aims at at shaping the future of Africa.
â€œAfrica is reach with natural resources, land and people but its people are among the poorest in the world. This forum gives us an opportunity to chat ways of how available natural resources can be used to improve wellbeing of our peopleâ€ Amina Said
While chairing a session on Innovative Strategies for the Implementation of Agenda 2063 and Its Flagship Programmes, Minister Louise Mushikiwabo indicated that for Africa to have its place among other prosperous continents, it requires members to be serious, focused and organized.
She reminded participants that Africaâ€™s 50-year vision, Agenda 2063 provides an opportunity for both short and long term planning by focusing more on priority projects.
â€œWe have to look into our planning pattern in both short and long term vis-a-vis how we implement so as to arrive to durable solutions of problems affecting our people.
Juma Calestous a Professor of the Practice of International Development and Faculty Chair of the Innovation for Economic Development Executive Program at Harvard Kennedy School reminded that Africa must build science, research, technology and innovation capacities by using and expanding existing capacities in research institutes and universities.
â€œEducation is critical to transformation. Countries that educate and skill their population begin to see impact within one generation. Rwanda is leading the way on this for leveraging its economic needs to education.
â€œI commend Rwanda for introducing entrepreneurial reforms in education sector that has played a key role in its immense social economic-transformation that has seen a good number of people lifted out of poverty. Other African countries need to try this modal since it has proven to be an important pillar of developmentâ€. Prof Calestous noted
At the retreat, Ministers adopted the report to be submitted to the 27th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State. Among other major resolutions include raising awareness of African Paradox at different levels by engaging top leadership and citizenry, determination and change of mindset in fighting corruption and impunity, mobilization of domestic resources to increase taxes which will raise revenues for infrastructure and education plus advancing industrialization agenda.
The maiden Ministerial Retreat of the Executive Council was held in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia in January 2014, with its major focus on the development of Agenda 2063.