President Paul Kagame has condemned xenophobic attacks in South Africa and said that the violence is taking the continent backwards.
“Whether it’s where it’s taking place or anywhere else in the continent, it is something that would only take us backward, not advancing,” Kagame said.
South Africans accuse foreigners of occupying most jobs and businesses. South Africa’s employment is estimated at 24%.
“Africans should live everywhere they want to be,” he said.
Kagame, who was accompanied by the First Lady, Jeannette Kagame, was on April 16, attending the 4th Tana High Level Forum on security in Africa with Heads of States in Addia-Abbba, Ethiopia.
In a joint press briefing with Kagame, Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn also said, “The violence in South Africa is something everyone will not agree with as Africans.”
The two leaders later held bilateral meetings and agreed to exchange best practices in agriculture as well as peace and security, with Kagame inviting Prime Minister to visit Rwanda as way of continuing the ‘excellent relationship’.
They also met with both the Ethiopian and Rwandan business community. Kagame visited the state-owned Metal and Engineering Corporation (METEC) in Bishoftu.
On the sidelines, after visiting Ethiopia’s National Museum, the First Ladies Mrs Roman Tesfaye and Mrs Jeannette Kagame visited the Muya weaving and pottery center and later the fastest growing African Shoe Brand, the SoleRebels factory.
Rwanda’s Trade Minister, Francois Kanimba told KTPress that the two countries have signed trade agreement to “facilitate, strengthen and expand trade between the two countries.”
Meanwhile, from Ethiopia, Kagame will be in Algiers on Sunday, April 19, for a three- day visit to discuss the expansion of strategic cooperation, including business and fighting terrorism, which the two countries have had since 1978.
He will later travel to Marrakech, Morocco for a high-profile conference organized by the Clinton Foundation, on May 5-7, to discuss connecting governments and nonprofits and address problems affecting host areas.
Expected attendees include executives from OCP and Coca-Cola, Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete, and senior officials from UAE, Egypt and the League of Arab States. Former Israeli President Shimon Peres is also on the list.
President Kagame is a close friend to former US President Bill Clinton, whose foundation has funded multiple social projects in Rwanda.