Kagame sends olive branch to DR Congo over methane gas (Speech)
The following is a speech delivered by Rwanda President Paul Kagame May 17, 2016 as he unveiled a 25MW methane gas power plant on L. Kivu shared with war torn neighbor the Democratic Republic of Congo. President Kagame wants renewed cooperation to extract more power from the explosive lake â€“ considered by scientists as death trap for the region. Full speech below:
I couldnâ€™t be any happier for what we have witnessed today. I am happy to join you here today to launch the KivuWatt Methane Gas Power Plant.
Once again, I want to thank everyone who has been involved from the beginning, to this day, starting with ContourGlobal, for bringing Phase 1 of the project to a successful conclusion as we have witnessed.
As ContourGlobal CEO Joseph Brandt said, they tried so many times and failed so many times, in the end not only have they succeeded, we have all succeeded.
Itâ€™s the same spirit we try to live by in our country.Â Â We keep trying, we keep trying and we donâ€™t give up. In fact thereâ€™s a saying in Kinyarwanda, if I try to translate it: â€œYou may accuse me of having failed but you find reasons to accuse me for not having triedâ€.
So thank you Jo and everyone who supported this team.
The 26MW we have today is only one step, a very important, positive step. It wonâ€™t address our energy problems but itâ€™s an indication of what is possible in trying to address this challenge. It goes beyond the 26MW, it tells us that in a short time, we can also address all these challenges we have.
For our neighbours DRC, through the officials representing the government here, I want to say: this is a resource we share and we have wanted to work with DRC on this project and we will continue to want to do so. So please take our message back home.
In fact, coming back with Joseph on the boat we agreed that what we want is electricity, thatâ€™s what is important, it doesnâ€™t matter who does it or where itâ€™s done.
If DRC had been the one to start this, the easiest I would have gone there and asked can we do more to do more of what there doing to get more electricity, thatâ€™s ultimately what we want
Therefore if our neighbours and friends want to join hands to bring this project to scale and produce electricity to serve Rwanda and DRC, I say you are most welcome.
This experience has come with a lot of learning for the company behind this projects, and for all of us, so next time we can do better and cheaper.
A lot of scientific research and technological innovation was required, even more than was realised at the outset.
In fact as the CEO of CG said, some even thought it was an impossible endeavour. But we are happy today that things have proved to be different
So to the African Development Bank, US Government, Netherlands, Belgium, and other countries here that have helped and promised to keep helping involved, I want to express our thanks.
There are many, so if I have forgotten to mention them, the message is we are happy to be working with you on important project such as this one and we look forward to stronger cooperation and continues production of sufficient electricity.
I canâ€™t forget the European Union and the World Bank, who have been wonderful as far as cooperation for our development is concerned and every day Rwandans are grateful for it as they take it from there and do the best for themselves.
So I wish you a very happy day, as happy as we feel ourselves, and also happy for continued cooperation.
(See more photos of the event here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/kigali-today/albums/72157668160718562)