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Working together leads to remarkable achievements - Kagame

> 13 August 2015

President Paul Kagame has said working together delivers remarkable progress and each and every Rwandan has a stake and should not be left behind in moving the country forward.

The Head of State made the remarks while addressing members of the business community of Gakiriro in Gisozi, Kigali, yesterday, after touring the Gisozi Commercial Centre, which has been developed by five cooperatives.

The majority of the members were either relocated from high risk areas or are former street hawkers.

The area has become a beehive of activity involving nearly 1,000 cooperative members who own buildings, worth about Rwf15 billion, and have turned the commercial centre into a home to the biggest furniture market in Kigali.

President Kagame congratulated the members of the cooperative on their achievements and encouraged them to keep working together to strive for more in their business endeavours;

“When people work together, their achievements become remarkable. This (Gakiriro Commercial Centre) is a good example of what we are capable of achieving together,” Kagame said.

“The question is what is stopping us from moving even faster. We may be faced with a lot of costs but the most costly for us all is time. We cannot afford to waste any time.”

Gakiriro commercial centre currently employs 6000 people, many of whom have achieved remarkable progress, including building their own homes and taking giving their children quality education.

Justin Gashayija, who spoke on behalf of the members of the cooperatives, praised the President for leading Rwanda to peace and prosperity, an environment which she said was good for business.

Working with local govt

The Mayor of Gasabo, Stephen Rwamurangwa, promised President Kagame and members of the cooperative that district officials will continue to work with the business operators to protect what has been achieved in Gisozi.

“We know very well that the right governance is about welcoming everyone’s contribution. We will continue working with the private sector to sustain what has been achieved,” he said.

Members of cooperatives working from Gakiriro commercial centre also told the President about some challenges they are faced with, including high interest bank loans, expensive fines from the Rwanda Revenue Authority, high import taxes on wood products, and the sale of wood products on the blackmarket.

The President promised the business operators that relevant institutions in the country will address the issues raised accordingly.

The Head of State encouraged members of the cooperatives to keep working together, moving faster, and leaving no one behind.

“When everyone has a stake and moves together, no one is left behind,” President Kagame said.

President Kagame also promised the business community that an innovation centre will be set up in Gakiriro commercial centre to modernise carpentry.

The five cooperatives that operate from Gakiriro commercial centre in Gisozi include Duhahirane, which is in retail business; ADARWA and APARWA, which are involved in carpentry and selling wood products; as well as COPCOM and SOPROCOGI, which sell construction materials.