29.06.2017 19:21 Age: 50 days

Farewell Ceremony to Mr. Azam Saber

Yesterday, 28th June 2017, Hon. Minister MUKANTABANA Seraphine and his Team hosted a farewell ceremony for Mr. AZAM Saber the UNHCR Representative in Rwanda who is ending his three years’ term in Rwanda.

Hon. Minister MUKANTABANA Seraphine Farewell Speech to Mr. AZAM Saber UNHCR Representative:

“Today we are gathered here in a moment that is not one of my favorites, A moment that is even more difficult especially when I have to give a farewell speech to a brother, a colleague and one person who has been a mentor in refugee management issues to not only myself but to the entire team Rwanda and United Nations team.

Together with you in that seemingly very short period that you have spent in our country so much have been achieved:

-          Schools were built;

-          Equipped health centres put in place;

-          A huge water plant was installed In Mahama to serve both Refugees and in the near future host community alike;

-          The first ever university to operate in a refugee camp in Africa South of the Sahara was set up in the Rwandan refugee camp;

-          The livelihood program was rolled out to assist refugees get self- reliant;

-          Semi-permanent houses that conform to the policy of our government of no plastic sheeting for habitation were constructed.

The list is long.

With all that has been done and more, I have tried on behalf of the Ministry that I lead and on my own behalf to find words, or at least a gesture to appropriately acknowledge your zeal, and good works, appreciate your cooperation and good heart, but words have failed me.  One word seems to come to my mind, and that is Thank You.

Thank you for the steadfastness;

Thank you for your understanding and compassion with which you have carried out your duties as the Representative of the UNHCR;

Thank you for your concrete and innovative ideas of how camps can be better places to live in;

Thank you for mentoring all of us in ways of making the lives of refugees better;

But most of all thank you for loving Rwanda.

As I end my short speech, I would like to remind you not look anywhere else for good tourist destinations, always think of what Rwanda can offer; When you miss a country that is clean and orderly and you want to escape the hussle and bussle of Geneva; Fly back to Rwanda.

Rwanda is home to you and we shall always be happy to receive you.

With those few words, I wish to thank the excellent collaboration that exists between our two institutions of MIDIMAR and UNHCR.

I thank you once again.”

“I am leaving Rwanda with a wealth of knowledge I will always treasure. Working here has been a fantastic learning experience and I am thankful for the skills I've acquired. I feel as if being here with you all each day has made me a more complete” said Mr. AZAM Saber during his farewell speech.

He also thanked Hon. Minister and the Ministry Team for the warm welcome he was received with three years back when he came to represent UNHCR in Rwanda. He appreciated how the Government of Rwanda always takes the issue of Refugees at heart.

Rwanda warmly welcomes his successor Mr. Ahmed BABA FALL.

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