President Paul Kagame was, on July 9, awarded the Order of Excellence, Bahamas’ highest honor in recognition of his friendship to the government and people of the Bahamas.
He received the award from Governor General Cornelius Smith of Bahamas, in the presence of Prime Minister Philip Davis, Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell of Grenada, Prime Minister Ariel Henry of Haiti, Commonwealth Secretary General Patricia Scotland, among other several dignitaries.
This was on the occasion for the celebration of the 50th Anniversary of independence of the Bahamas.
Kagame congratulated the people of Bahamas and their great achievement over half a century as an independent nation, becoming a pillar of stability and prosperity in the region, and a model to small island developing states all over the world.
“It is no accident that the post-independence period saw the Bahamas grow into a major financial center and one of the world’s leading tourism destinations. The Bahamas have much to be proud of including the good stewardship and leadership that has sustained this progress over the years.”
He reaffirmed Rwanda’s commitment to fostering closer relations between the people of both countries but also between Africa and the Caribbean in general, drawing from the common history the regions share despite the geographical distance.
“Those bonds are a solid foundation upon which to build stronger and deeper cooperation as we work together to address the challenges facing countries like ours.”
Furthermore, he thanked the government and the people of Bahamas for the honor bestowed upon him, saying, “I accept it humbly as a mark of the ongoing friendship between our nations.”
Earlier that day, Kagame had a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Philip Davis of Bahamas to discuss the strengthening and collaboration between the Bahamas and Rwanda by building on the existing ties between the two nations.
Kagame started his Caribbean visit on July 5, first stopping in Trinidad and Tobago to attend the 45th Meeting of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM).
Davis was last in Rwanda in June 2022, during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).