CHOGM 2022

CHOGM 2022 kicks-off in Rwanda

The 2022 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) has kicked-off in Rwanda’s capital Kigali. The meeting which brings together leaders from majorly former British colonies started on Monday 20 June and will run till Saturday 25 June.

This is the first CHOGM in four years after the initial meeting which was scheduled in 2020 was postponed due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. The last meeting took place in 2018 in London where Rwanda was selected to host the following meeting. The meeting is hosted by member countries on a rotation basis every two years. Rwanda was admitted into the Commonwealth in 2009 and became the latest country to join the organisation.

Who is attending

Apart from the heads of state from the commonwealth, CHOGM 2022 will be graced other high-profile diplomats. These include the Prince of Wales, Charles and his wife the Duchess of Cornwall. Prince Charles will be representing his mother, Queen Elizabeth II who is unable to attend this year’s meeting. The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson is also expected to attend the meeting where he also be handing over the role of chair-in-office of the Commonwealth to the President of Rwanda, Paul Kagame.

What will be discussed

The theme for this year’s CHOGM is “Delivering a Common Future: Connecting, Innovating, Transforming.”

The meeting involve a series of summits which have already started in Kigali. Although the major meetings will take place on last two days, these will be preceded by many different forums. These include the Commonwealth Youth Forum (CYF), Commonwealth Women’s Forum (CWF), Commonwealth People’s Forum, Commonwealth Business Forum, ministerial meetings, among others. The meeting will be climaxed by high-level meetings which will include executive sessions with the heads of state and other high level dignitaries.

Rwanda’s First Lady Jeannette Kagame officially opened the Commonwealth Women’s Forum on Monday  with the theme,“Delivering a Common Future: Transforming Gender Equality.”

“The 2022 Kigali CHOGM Women’s Forum does not just occur in a country that consistently pushes for the emergence and recognition of women in leadership. It occurs in a country where rape was used barely three decades ago as a weapon of war. Today, Rwanda is ranked by the World Economic Forum as the seventh country in the world for closing the gender gap,” she said.

“We, too, can adapt our strategies for accelerated progress, our service provision, our collaboration frameworks, our militancy and advocacy, our education and research, and every tool in the arsenal which will combat gender inequality in order to transform for better the landscape in which we exist.” She added.

Commonwealth Secretary-General, Baroness Patricia Scotland called upon the 54 member states to have a closer cooperation in order to achieve gender equality and women empowerment.

What does CHOGM mean for Rwanda

Rwanda deemed it right to join apply to join the Commonwealth organisation despite not being a former British colony. Perhaps the East African nation had anticipated a few benefits that would come as a result of being part of the association. Indeed Rwanda went on to change its academic syllabus from French to English in order to be on the same page with other Commonwealth members especially when it comes to communication. 

Hosting CHOGM is another opportunity Rwanda is going to use to enhance her other sectors and bring them to global attention. These include tourism and trade, two of the country’s sectors that are steering Rwanda’s fast economic development. 

Rwanda is a popular destination for primate safaris like gorilla trekking in Volcanoes National Park as well other amazing wildlife experiences like game viewing and chimpanzee tracking. The country is investing heavily in her tourism sector which evidenced by mega money deals promotion deals signed between Visit Rwanda and giant European football clubs like Arsenal FC in England and PSG in France. 

CHOGM 2022

As the hosts of CHOGM 2022, Rwanda will be using this global platform to showcase more of her such potentials to the wold which will further contribute to her economic development. 

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