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Although mass graves continue to be discovered, the last few years could be defined as Rwanda’s re-emergence. Undergoing intense and rapid reconstruction, Rwanda aspires to reconcile itself within a framed view of the Western world. The ruling political party, led by Paul Kagame who is currently in his second seven year Presidential term, fuels much of this transformation. Their vision is widely shared in Rwanda and is very much driven by the rhetoric of development.
Rwanda might best described as a state reverberating with the echoes of deep trauma. A trauma that is often concealed by the aggression of the determined development that signifies ‘re-emergence’, much of which is visible within the surged transformation of its capital Kigali from small town to a ‘leader in city development’.
This vision is aided and devised by US and Singaporean planning consortiums and funded and realised in part by Chinese contractors. It also bestows much of the generic characteristics of other African city masterplans. Key to this vision are large scale infrastructural insertions and transportation linkages aiming to reconnect Rwanda’s landlocked geography with the rest of the continent.