Where to start?
Perhaps with Uganda if you’ve been following my observations ….
You will have noted I was impressed with Uganda
Now up the ante and you get Rwanda
City of a thousand hills and the envy of surrounding countries
Everywhere you travel you are on the side of a hill looking down into a green valley and across to more of the city on the opposite hill – I could not tell which hill I was on at any time – quite confusing 😀. But the streets aren’t named, they are numbered, which I should imagine, must be a big help.
The smallest country in Africa I am told (although I have not checked that), landlocked between Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi, and Zaire.
12mill people – very soft spoken- I had to lean in to hear my guide much of the time.
The cheapest medical insurance in the world at $5 per person ( think monthly)
The highest is $10. Compulsory
Education to year 10 is free and subsidised thereafter.
Very attractive sub economic housing is being built for the last of the poor – they will be given the homes with 50 years to purchase them at subsidised costs.
Scooters everywhere again with one exception ; no beds, coffins, sweet potatoes or entire families loaded on them 😂. Only one passenger allowed and both driver and pillion must wear helmets 🏍
Steering wheel ( and driver😜) on left hand side and they drive on the right hand side – it all feels very wrong and makes for a nervous passenger ( me)
Having said that though, while a casual glance gives the impression of chaos, when you take notice it is clear everyone knows what’s going on – no one needs to push in, they are allowed in, and no one seems to be rushing so it all works in a quiet way.
AND best invention ever!!!! The lights ( robots to some😜) are not just red or green lights🚦 but rather offer a red or green second count down : so you know exactly how long you will have to wait for or how soon you will not be able to go- surely an excellent stress reducer in the traffic – no wondering when on earth this blessed light is going to change 😂😂😂
And again the green, lush, fertile and productive earth is visible everywhere.
Everyone I have spoken to and I have asked everyone I have met what they make of their president Kagame, (whom some outside journalists imply is too dictatorial for the modern world).
Without hesitation each has applauded him as having all Rwandans interest at heart – his approach to the healing of this country has a familiar ring to it for us South Africans and perhaps because of the smaller population and groups, his legacy will last longer.
On the last Saturday if every month the country has ‘Community day’ when Everyone, children men women adult elderly parliamentarians, president, butcher etc etc meet in the various communities and work side by side – gardening, painting, whatever that community needs and ‘talk’ and hear what the local issues of concern are and plan into the future
As I say an interesting country. Defined by their recent horrific experience, but not limited by it – rather actively using it to propel the people towards a brighter future
“The future of any society depends on its ability to understand and reconcile with its past
Throughout Rwanda youth are engaged in peace education programmes and unity clubs”