By Kennedy Ndahiro
KIGALI - President Paul Kagame yesterday launched a new book, “Paul Kagame and the resilience of a people”. The 128-page book, published by Les Editions du Jaguar, a subsidiary of Jeune Afrique publication, tells the story of Paul Kagame, the RPF and the rebuilding of a shattered nation.
The President thanked the publishers, who were represented by veteran journalist, Francois Soudan, for doing a good job in telling the story of Rwanda’s road to success.
Kagame particularly singled out Soudan for his professionalism in many of his reports in Jeune Afrique.
“During the period of difficulties our country had with the French, Francois was very consistent from the beginning. He was never influenced by this or that opinion. He steered right in the middle of it and professionally continued doing what he was doing,” said the President.
He continued, pointing out that the many interviews he had with Soudan helped bridge the gap in Franco-Rwandan relations.
“What you see in this book, in pictures and in words; It did not come anyhow or by accident, it is always the efforts that some people consciously do put in place to deal with many challenges so that the people of this country can shape their future”.
The President emphasized that it was a way of telling the story of what the country was doing and achieving.
“Many of these things we were unable to tell ourselves. You can only tell a story about what is there, what you have done. So, in the end, there is more importance in doing things that create a story to tell than tell the story itself.
“Rwandans have done so many things that are very meaning full to them and to others, but the story is never told. So when we get people who can tell the story in a professional and very clear way like this, we appreciate,” said the President.
He added that there were many unsung heroes in the country who battle against all odds everyday but triumph.
“The heroes out there, will never get to be known, ordinary people; survivors, children, women, and others who carry a lot on their shoulders- children who bring up families, when they should be brought up themselves by families, they have taken the responsibility to bring up themselves, bring up families, and meet challenges that you wouldn’t have expected anybody in that category to carry on their shoulders, but they do it. It makes a huge difference to the whole country and to the nation,” said the President
“I thank all Rwandans for all kinds of efforts they have carried out to reconcile, for justice to be established, for fairness, for governance, for prosperity”.
On his part, Francois Soudan said that what has always impressed him about Kagame is what impresses him of the Rwandan people today; dignity and high sense of purpose. He revealed that in the many interviews he has had with the President, the Head of State never dodges questions but answers them with “surgical precision”.
The book goes on sale in major bookshops around the country today and will also be available in all Rwandan diplomatic missions.
*Paul Kagame est responsable de la mort de plus de 5 millions de citoyens rwandais et congolais massacrés par les troupes du FPR entre 1990 et 2010.