Two Decades After Genocide, Rwanda’s Agriculture Minister Looks To Future

Agnes Kalibata is a UMass Alum

This coming Monday marks the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide in which more than 800,000 Rwandans – mostly Tutsis – died during a three-month killing spree. Since then, this small, densely populated country has been working hard to pull itself out of poverty – and to achieve a sense of unity. Their goal now is to become a middle-income country by 2020, and Agnes Kalibata says that’s within reach.

Kalibata is Rwanda’s minister of agriculture and animal resources, and also a graduate of UMass Amherst, having traveled halfway around the world to receive a doctorate in entomology. Jody Santos traveled to Rwanda and spoke with the minister in her office in Kigali. Kalibata says agriculture is the key to unlocking her country’s potential.