Rwanda President Paul Kagame has said that the growth of the Rwandan economy is real, despite claims that the country is cooking figures.
Last week, the Financial Times reported that the Rwandan Government falsified data on poverty to give an impression that the country was making tremendous progress.
Speaking Speaking at a State Banquet in Namibia , Kagame said that some reports on Rwanda are based on hearsays and content from the internet without always checking its authenticity.
“The growth of our economy is real, it is felt by the people of our country, it originates with them, they are the ones who toil and put in hard work every day,” Kagame said while on for a three-day State visit to Namibia
“I can confidently say that the people of my country are working very hard to improve their lives,” the President said.
“They are happy with what they have whether in terms of their leaders or working together or making a difference for themselves between 25 years ago and now.”
The president further said; “We are very fine. We have problems we have to deal with every day. We have been reducing levels of poverty very fast in actual fact, so it is helping us to resolve those other issues that people talk about.”
One of the growth he mentioned was in areas of agriculture where people are now able to feed themselves.
“Growth in agriculture started about 12 years ago, we had never had growth before then. It is not just growth by numbers, it is growth that is felt in a farmers’ pocket, how they are able to feed themselves and what they produce,” the president said.
“That is why it is easy to measure the impact of some of the aspects of our growth. You can’t cook these numbers. If you are able to do that and everybody else that deals with you in scrutinizing these numbers then there is a problem in the world and not just Rwanda.”
“If we cooked numbers we would be cheating ourselves not anybody else. Those writing stories about us are not people we want to please or satisfy. We want to satisfy ourselves.”
We don’t want to be validated, we want to do things that are good for us not just to please others. He said.