While travelling from Uganda to South Africa I caught up on the news. Rwanda had been timely as there was some violence at the border with Congo – the other two countries with wild gorilla populations.
I had considered going to Rwanda but was pressed for time. That, and I carry my dirty laundry in plastic bags. They are illegal – fair enough – but Lonely Planet advises that you get searched for such vile contraband and the boarder. Perhaps lamely, that likely tipped the scales and I didn’t go. Well, it’s also a French colony too so that causes me linguistic fits.
Then I happened on an article about Paul Kabale. He’s the guy in charge in Rwanda. It was a brilliant interview. The plastic bag overreaction that had previously gotten my attention is just one of many of Kagame’s wild interventions in day-to-day life in the name of progress.
It’s quite a provocative and balanced piece. And on the whole the rapidly increasing standard of living in Rwanda speaks for itself in an neighborhood with other strongmen who likely (a) don’t give interviews and (b) don’t even try to advance the common good in their country as it’s incompatible with advancing the good of only them personally (and perhaps their family and their tribe.) There is an interesting parallel to the high rate of development in Ethiopia as well.
Regardless, had I read this piece while still in the area I would have probably spent a few days there.