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Rwanda: Presidential Advisory Council members meet in Kigali

Kagame and members of his Presidential Advisory Council (PAC)

Kagame and members of his Presidential Advisory Council (PAC)

KIGALI – The Presidential Advisory Council (PAC), a group of eminent Rwandan and International experts who offer strategic advice and guidance to President Paul Kagame, began a three-day meeting in Kigali yesterday March 29.

The group, which meets in April and in September every year, will discuss a number of issues including education and skills; taxation policy and the development of the financial sector in Rwanda. It is not known if they’ll advise him on urgent matters of the day regarding opening Rwanda governance to a democratic system and listening to numerous voices of dissatisfied Rwandans.

The discussions will be informed by visits to various parts of the country.

PAC was officially launched on September 26, 2007, by President Paul Kagame. It comprises a special team of Rwandans and “friends of Rwanda” coming from a variety of high level backgrounds whose mission is to advise the President on Rwanda’s strategic development choices and initiatives, using their considerable combined and wide-ranging knowledge, experience and contacts.

PAC is co-chaired by President Kagame and Joe Ritchie the Chicago based multimillionaire founding CEO of Fox River Financial Resources Inc. one of the world’s leading commodity trader was one of the first key and outstanding persons to pick interest in Rwanda.  Joe Ritchie is currently the CEO of Rwanda Development Board, a grouping of different government parastatals managed under one head.

The inaugural PAC meeting took place in New York, when President Kagame travelled there to take part in the annual United Nations General Assembly and the Clinton Global Initiative.

The members Presidential Advisory Council are (as of 2009):

  1. Scott Ford – President and CEO of Alltel
  2. Sir Tom Hunter – Scottish entrepreneur, philanthropist, co-founder Clinton-Hunter Development Initiative
  3. Dr. Donald Kaberuka – President of the African Development Bank Group, former Minister of Finance, Rwanda
  4. Dr. Clet Niyikiza – GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Vice President of Worldwide Research & Development
  5. Kaia Miller – founder of Aslan Global, Inc.
  6. Joe Ritchie – Rwanda’s Honorary Consul in Chicago, founder Fox River Financial Resources, Inc and CEO of Rwanda Developement Board.
  7. Michael Roux – Rwanda’s Honorary Consul General in Australia, Chairman, Asian Markets, KPMG; Roux International Pty Ltd; RI Group;
  8. Bishop John Rucyahana – Retired ex-Bishop of Shyira Diocese of Rwanda
  9. Tribert Rujugiro Ayabatwa – Rwandan Entrepreneur, Board President of Rwanda Investment and Export Promotion Agency
  10. Dr. Eliane Ubalijoro – Assistant Professor at McGill University, Canada
  11. Pastor Rick Warren – Religious leader, founder Saddleback Church, and PEACE Plan.
  12. Prof. Michael Porter is also a member of PAC though he did not attend the launch.
  13. Tony Blair, former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

Others PAC members are:

  1. Bel Dowson
  2. James Musoni, Rwanda’s minister of Finance
  3. Rosemary Museminari, Rwanda’s Foreign Affairs minister
  4. Gatare Francis, new Personal Representative of President Kagame to the NEPAD Steering Committee
  5. Himbara David, Private Secretary to President Kagame
  6. Kanimba François. Governor, Rwanda National Bank
  7. Michael Fairbank, Chairman Emeritus and founder of The OTF Group, a software and strategy consulting firm based in USA.


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