Her Excellency Ms. Yamina Karitanyi, Ambassador of the Republic of Rwanda to Ireland, presented her Letters of Credence to The President of Ireland, Michael Higgins, at a formal ceremony held at Áras an Uachtaráin.
The presentation marked the official assumption of duties as Non-Resident Ambassador of the Republic of Rwanda to Ireland. The Ambassador was received at Iveagh House in Dublin and escorted to Áras an Uachtaráin by an Escort of Honour, and was welcomed warmly by The President of Ireland. During the ceremony, the Ambassador presented her Letters of Credence to The President, who then accredited her as the Ambassador of the Republic of Rwanda to Ireland.
The Ambassador thanked The President of Ireland for the audience and conveyed greetings and best wishes from H.E President Paul Kagame, expressing the desire to further strengthen a positive relationship and partnership between Rwanda and Ireland. The President, in turn, conveyed his best regards to H.E President Kagame and to the people of Rwanda. The Ambassador was accompanied by Mr. Fidelis Mironko, First Counsellor, and other guests at the credentials ceremony included Ms. Marcella Corcoran-Kennedy T.D., Minister for Health Promotion, who represented the Government of Ireland at the Ceremony, Mr. Art O’Leary, Secretary-General to the President, Col. Michael Kiernan, Aide-de-Camp to the President, Mr. James Kingston, Assistant Secretary, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
H.E. Ms. Yamina Karitanyi later hosted a Vin d’Honneur at the O’Callaghan Mont Clare Hotel, Dublin, which was attended by several Ambassadors from friendly states, officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland, members of the Civic Society, NGO’s, Friends of Rwanda and members of the Rwandese community in Ireland.
Speaking on behalf of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Ireland, Ms Paula Kenny, Desk Officer at the Development Cooperation Division, congratulated the Ambassador on her accreditation and, spoke positively of Rwanda’s transformation and continued progress, particularly praising Rwanda’s Economic development, its leadership in Women Empowerment and its peacekeeping initiatives. Ms Kenny added that her department is proud to work with a stable, strategic and progressive partner, and that the strong bilateral relations between Ireland and Rwanda are based on shared values and priorities. She also assured the Ambassador that Ireland, through its Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, will offer its full support to Her Excellency throughout her tour of duty.
Addressing the guests, the Ambassador pledged to work tirelessly during her tour of duty to ensure that the solid collaboration between the two nations, which has had a positive impact on Rwanda over the years, continue to grow. Speaking on Rwanda’s transformation, Her Excellency reminded guests that many of the successes achieved thus far are thanks to home-grown solutions and good partnerships. She said that the lessons from Rwanda’s heavy past “have given us [Rwandans] the resolve, tenacity and resilience that has brought the nation as far as it has come today”, and that with a clear vision of to make it a middle-income country by 2020; driven by a capable and responsive state, supported by a knowledge-based economy, the sky is the limit to how much Rwanda can achieve along with its partners.
The Ambassador noted that there is a growing engagement of Irish companies doing great work in Rwanda, such as Bewley’s Tea, the Healy Group, the International Computer Driving Licence, who’s African hub is based in Kigali, Traidlinks, adding that Rwanda expects the number of visitors and trade between the two countries to grow following the introduction of direct flights from Kigali to London Gatwick, with a short connection to Dublin, Ireland. The Ambassador invited tourists and investors to visit Rwanda, and take advantage of the eased access to the country.
The Ambassador closed by proposing a toast for the good health of The President of Ireland and for the continued strong bilateral relationship between Ireland and Rwanda.