Who is William Nkurunziza, the new ambassador to India?
Kigali: The newly appointed ambassador to India, Mr. William Nkurunziza is the man who came under severe criticism four years ago for incompetency from President Paul Kagame and later lost his job.
Mr. Nkurunziza was the first head of Rwanda Investment and Export Promotion Agency (RIEPA) – charged with bringing in investments and increasing exports. RIEPA is now part of the Rwanda Development Board (RDB).
His job came to the rocks when the appointing authority seemed not to see any tangible results.
In February 2006, President Paul Kagame broke his silence.
“How will you talk about investment, export promotion, education and other things we intend to discuss here without exploring viable ways of addressing the power crisis we are facing?” he said at the annual closed-door retreat.
Saying he was only giving examples, the President made references to several officials namely labour and public service minister El Hajj Andre Habib Bumaya (now exiled), education minister Prof. Romain Murenzi (left country), and the Director General of Rwanda Investment and Export Promotion Williams Nkurunziza, and said that some high-profile leaders were working unacceptably.
“However much you, Williams Nkurunziza, might speak good English and be eloquent when talking about export promotion, without electricity you achieve nothing,” Kagame fired.
He wondered how twelve years after the so called enlightened leadership, energy crisis had continued to dog the country. “Twelve years in power without power!”
And indeed in May the following year, Mr. Nkurunziza was sacked and replaced with Mr. Francis Gatare at RIEPA. Mr. Gatare is now the Principal Private Secretary to the President.
Mr. Nkurunziza was not given any posting after serving at the helm of the investment body for several years. Since then he has reportedly been working in Nairobi.
It is hoped that, in the meantime, he has acquired more skills which will allow him to show real performance in his new post as Rwandan Ambassador to India.