Rwandan president Paul Kagame has officially become the new chairman of the African Union (AU), taking on the role during the 30th summit of the continental body this week. By Peter Pedroncelli



Kagame took over the chairmanship from Guinea president Alpha Conde at the assembly of the heads of state and government, within the framework of the AU Summit, which took place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, according to NewVision.
Kagame’s ascension to power within the continental union will undoubtedly be good for the integration and proliferation of technology throughout Africa.
The Rwandan president is known as a major advocate for the benefits that a technology-reliant country can provide to its people. His efforts as president of the East African nation are testament to this idea, and the advances that have been possible thanks to his focus on tech.
Under Kagame’s watch, Rwanda has experienced incredible progress in implementing technology programs, building successful tech partnerships with the private sector and creating an environment where innovation can thrive.
Kagame is also the chairman of Smart Africa, an organization that aims to provide leadership in accelerating socio-economic development through information and communication technologies.
The emphasis on technology is a theme that the president proudly champions within his own country, and on the continent as a whole, mentioning it in his chairmanship acceptance speech.
He said that African nations need to create a single continental market, integrate their infrastructure and revitalize their economies through technology, according to AllAfrica.
Kagame’s tech focus amplified through African Union
As chairman of the African Union, Kagame will be well placed to influence and establish policies and frameworks which will enhance the role technology plays across the continent, while encouraging AU members to embrace technology and its transformative nature.
Without a doubt, a big part of his mandate during a one-year term at the helm of the continental union will include emphasizing the role that technology can play in boosting economies, creating jobs and addressing challenges throughout Africa.
A simple look at Kagame’s achievements in his home country illustrate the potential that he holds for advancing Africa’s tech ambitions in his new position of power.
Rwanda has become Africa’s tech development star in recent years, accelerating growth thanks to a focus on technological development.
Kagame’s government, in an effort to become an information and communication technology services economy, and has invested over $100 million in a 2,796 mile fibre network, according to ITNewsAfrica.
The country continues to role out 4G internet across the nation, and a successful One Laptop Per Child school program is the envy of many education systems.
A Global Information Technology Report by the World Economic Forum even placed Rwanda first in government success with regards to information and communication technology promotion, according to Mail&Guardian.
The international recognition that the country has received for its tech focus under Kagame has been noteworthy, and with the ambitious and tech-savvy leader set to guide a panel of 55 African heads of state on issues relating to the continent, Africa’s tech future with Kagame in charge is much brighter.