How Nigeria should take a lesson from Rwanda

By Mmaduabuchi Obinelo

“Size matters but being an active global power player requires more than the size of the country.

Rwanda is a country which has an immense history. This country was colonized by Belgium during the era of imperialism and slavery. This colonial encounter created some unhealthy environments in Rwanda. She stood out as one of those countries the continent which overturned the colonial and post-colonial horrors by taking her own destiny in her own hands. A nation with little natural resources has made significant progress more than many countries around her who has vast natural resources deposits.

Rwanda is sparsely populated
When we look at the nations of the world, their population matters. Also, it depends on the way the nation used her human resource. Rwanda has population but not compared to many African countries, but she has transcended all these to create a powerful workforce and an improved human resource. These countries that colonized other countries, many of them exercised power over nations that are far bigger than them. Size matters but being an active global power player requires more than the size of the country.

The errors of Rwanda’s past
Rwanda had a terrible genocide in 1994. This genocide was because of the errors of the past and some unresolved issues which plagued the country. The power imbalances and its effects on the socioeconomic ramifications of the country helped to fuel this disaster. The nation lost over 500,000 of her citizens in this horrible disaster which was caused by ethnic politics. These ethnic politics is deeply fuelled by neo colonialism and interests which does not put the citizens first. This country has immensely transformed her past by building a very vibrant society, a peaceful population, and a globally acknowledged clean nation.

Leadership in Rwanda
Her leverage has been leadership. The country under Paul Kagame has made significant progress. His leadership transformed her capital city Kigali into a well known and friendly city in the world. She is a nation which is now a global model when it comes to gender equality at workplaces. She has now had a very consultative democracy, where everyone is given room to express their opinions when it comes to the nation building.

Rwanda is an African country where public schools have a better standard that people are discouraged to venture into private schools as a business. All these and her strategic location and ethnic components have made her a nation which has a bigger role to play in the peace and security of her neighboring countries.

Rwanda also leveraged her dogged dependence on her citizens for the rebuilding of the country. While many others are still stuck in dependence syndrome. Rwanda is actively moving out of neo-colonialism and making strides in entrepreneurial fields. She is one of the top-ranking countries in the world in the ease of doing business. These have given her a comparative advantage towards her economic prosperity.

Africa’s interconnectivity
Rwanda has leveraged her gains and economic development to become a role model in Africa. She has championed pan-Africanism and is the first country in Africa that established the free visa on arrival for African citizens. She has set this precedence and has made some other countries to reshuffle their migration policies towards the African people. She has also leveraged her gains in making the country totally dependent on what they can do for themselves rather than the endemic dependence of many countries on foreign aids for development. All these have given Rwanda leverage to become outstanding amongst the nations of the world.

Zero tolerance on corruption
She has been a model when it comes to gender equality and these have made her one of the countries which are safe for women. This landmark achievement has attracted many female entrepreneurs to Rwanda and this has been one of the key gains the country has made in her human resource development as a nation. This has helped to minimize corruption and poverty because when women are in positions of authority, they are lesser corrupt because they have some fears of getting punished when caught.

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