Queen welcomes Rwanda to C’wealth
KIGALI - The Queen of England,
Her Majesty Elizabeth II,
who is the head of the Commonwealth,
has congratulated Rwanda upon
its admission into the grouping
that comprises mainly former British colonies.
In a congratulatory message to
President Paul Kagame and
the people of Rwanda,
Queen Elizabeth said that Rwanda
has made significant progress
in the last 15 years, and
the admission to the Commonwealth
is reflection of what
the Rwandan people
have achieved during this period.
"I send the people of Rwanda congratulations
on the occasion of their accession
to the Commonwealth.
Rwanda has made much progress since
the terrible events of 1994, and
its accession to the Commonwealth
is an indication of this."
"Both Rwanda and the Commonwealth
will gain greatly from
this new relationship, and I welcome
Rwanda as the 54th Member State."
the Queen's message reads.
Rwanda was unanimously admitted into
the Commonwealth as a 54th Member
on the 29th of November by
the Commonwealth Heads
of Government Meeting (CHOGM)
held in Trinidad and Tobago.
Following an assessment by
the Commonwealth Secretariat, Rwanda's admission
merited on grounds of having
good democratic processes such
as free and fair elections,
the rule of law and
independence of the judiciary.
Rwanda was equally commended
for good governance, protection
of human rights, freedom of
expression and having
a transparent system in place.
Rwanda's was backed by some
of the prominent members of the group
including Britain, Australia, Canada,
India, South Africa, Uganda, Kenya,
Tanzania and Trinidad and Tobago.
Rwanda became the second member
of the commonwealth without
any historical British colonial links
The Commonwealth accounts for
a population of more than
two billion and $2.8 trillion in annual trade.
Its main focus is promoting trade,
education and good governance
among its member countries.
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