Commonwealth Heads of State to meet in Rwanda

Commonwealth Heads of State to meet in Rwanda

After its postponement this year, the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) is set to take place in June next year in Rwandan capital city Kigali.

The biennial Heads of State Meeting from Commonwealth states was planned to take place in Rwandan capital in June this year but was postponed due to the impact of COVID-19 pandemic.

The Commonwealth Secretariat in London said in its recent statement that new date agreed with member countries will be the week of June 21, 2021 and the meeting is expected to bring together the 54 member states of the Commonwealth.

Next year’s meeting will be an “exceptional” occasion to deliberate together on the enormous technological, ecological, and economic challenges and opportunities facing the Commonwealth, particularly the countries’ young people, which are “all the more pressing” as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, said Rwandan President Paul Kagame said.

The Kigali meeting will be the second one to be held in East Africa. The first meeting was held in 2007 in Uganda. 

“The CHOGM looks forward to Commonwealth leaders coming together to take practical action on the critical issues we all face,” said the Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland.

The Commonwealth leaders are expected to discuss post-COVID recovery, but also climate change, the global economy, trade and sustainable development, which need to be dealt with “decisively” through” multilateral cooperation and mutual support, she said.

The leaders’ summit will be preceded by meetings for representatives from Commonwealth networks for youth, women, civil society and business.

CHOGM is the Commonwealth’s highest consultative and policy-making gathering. In their last meeting held in London in 2018, Commonwealth leaders selected Rwanda as host for the next summit this year before postponing it after the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.

Home to 2.4 billion people and includes both advanced economies and developing countries, its 32 members are small states, including Rwanda, one of a few Commonwealth members that don’t have historic links to Britain dating back to the colonial era.

The former Belgian colony, Rwanda joined the Anglophone association in 2009, after its government decided to change the medium of education from French to English.

CHOGM is customarily held every two years and is the Commonwealth’s highest consultative and policy-making gathering. READ MORE

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