The Swedish delegation with NUR staff during a presentation on NUR academic affairs.
From 04 to 05 March 2013, the delegation of Swedish Research Council along with Embassy of Sweden in Rwanda and Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) has been visiting the National University of Rwanda (NUR). This visit was in line with strengthening the cooperation already in place between NUR and Sweden through SIDA.
Several activities were on the program of this delegationâs visit and among them included witnessing the impact of SIDA support in different domains such as research, training of academic and administrative staff, ICT infrastructure, library resources and management and meeting high officials of Rwanda.
Maria Hakansson, the chargĂ© dâAffaires in the embassy of Sweden in Rwanda speaking to media, she revealed that the delegation appreciated the progress of cooperation between NUR and Sweden through SIDA. She also mentioned that the delegation was glad to find that the support of SIDA at NUR is used appropriately. Hakansson went on saying that Sweden is committed to cooperate with NUR in a five year plan to train massively staff on PHD and Masters Programs for the coming five years starting from July 2013 and ending in June 2018.
The interaction activities between NUR and the Swedish delegation began by welcome remarks delivered by the acting Rector of NUR, Prof. Manasse Mbonye who commended the government of Sweden for their support at NUR. He presented the background of NUR since its foundation and focused on status of NUR academic staff in terms of academic degree. He explained that thanks to the support of Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency ( SIDA), the number of NUR academic staff members who go on training at the level of Masterâs and PHD programs has grown. Prof. Mbonye also mentioned that the support of SIDA is impacting on research and currently NUR is committed to translate research into important activities to benefit the local community. Still in the sector of research, Prof. Verdiana Masanja, the Director of Research at NUR depicted the profile of research and publication in a period from 2006 to 2012 and NUR long term research objective till 2020.
After visiting NUR ,the next day which is 05 March 2013, the Swedish delegation with NUR staff members met the prime Minister Honourable Dr. Pierre Damien Habumuremyi who expressed appreciations on behalf of the government of Rwanda towards Sweden for their support in Rwanda âs education sector. From then on, the above mentioned delegation and NUR staff members met also Honourable Minister of Education, Dr. Vincent Biruta. At this occasion, the status of Higher learning institutions in Rwanda was on the spotlight. Minister Biruta pointed out that all public higher learning institutions will merge into one university of Rwanda by September 2013. He explained that the main objective of that switch is the facility of coordination. To the question about the time line of this one university project, Minister of Education stated that the process of one university in Rwanda has a two year transition period to make sure the process becomes effective.
Sweden through the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) has been supporting NUR since 2002 to the tune of approximately 41,000,000$. The program broadly consisted of two parts: Research training in the fields of Peace and Conflict, Education, Environment, Medicine, Applied Mathematics and ICT, NUR library system, ICT infrastructure and implementation of a Management Information System ( MIS).
Field tour at the Main Library
The Swedish delegation and NUR staff meeting with the Prime Minister. Here, the ChargĂ© d’Affaires in Embassy of Sweden in Rwanda and the chairman of the Swedish Research Council shaking hands with the Prime Minister.
In a group photo with the Prime Minister.
The delegation during a presentation on higher learning institutions at the Ministry of Education.
Minister of Education addressing the delegation.
L-R: The ChargĂ© d’Affaires in the Embassy of Sweden in Rwanda and the Chairman of Swedish Research Council.
The delegation in their meeting with researchers from different higher learning institutions, organs of the Ministry of Education in relation with research and other government bodies at Kigali Institute of Education.
By Jean Baptiste Micomyiza