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If there is a brain drain, it is because there is a brain here in the first place- H.E Paul Kagame

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During his recent visit to Benin, President Paul Kagame shared with 100 young entrepreneurs an insightful message about investing inward and combating the brain drain that many African countries continue to suffer from.

Brain drain has long been a controversial issue for many countries around the world. It refers to the emigration of highly skilled and educated people from their home country to seek better opportunities elsewhere.

This has been a consistent situation in developing countries, especially in Africa where individuals with advanced skills and knowledge believe they may find better opportunities and more rewarding careers in other countries particularly in the West.

Brain drain has far-reaching implications, particularly for the countries left behind, as they are left with a shortage of skilled labor, which can hinder economic growth and development.

H.E Paul Kagame, the President of Rwanda, is one of the African leaders who are particularly concerned about this.

In a recent conversation with 100 young entrepreneurs in Benin, who have also acknowledged brain drain to be a problem plaguing many countries, he emphasized that it is not just about individuals leaving their countries but rather a symptom of a deeper problem that needs to be addressed.

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He noted that the brain drain flow is a clear indication that something is lacking in these countries, something that attracts individuals to seek opportunities elsewhere.

He said, “You talked about brain drain, ask yourself why is there that brain drain. That flow means something. How about if you provided what is attracting people on the other side?” he said adding, “If there is a brain drain it is because there is a brain here in the first place here that is just being drained outward. Let’s now invest in this brain.”

According to President Kagame, the issue of brain drain is not just a problem for African countries, but a global issue that needs to be addressed. He called on young people to be confident in themselves and believe that they can make a difference in their own countries.

He urged them to invest in themselves and bring out the best of their abilities and skills to make a positive impact on their own societies.

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Speaking to the entrepreneurs he said, “Be confident in yourselves have belief, and go out and try. From a little of my experience, people ask how did you make it here or there my answer is simple ‘You can do it yourselves.’ You just have to do one thing go out and try it, if you fail here try somewhere else, if you fail in one thing try something else keep going keep trying.”

President Kagame’s view is that the key to addressing the brain drain is not to stop individuals from leaving their countries but to provide opportunities and an enabling environment that would encourage them to stay.

He urged African countries to invest in young people by creating an environment that is conducive to their growth and development.

He said, “The right investments to be made for the young people to freely come out and express themselves and be able to give us their best from their brain.”

President Kagame stressed that it is essential to retain the best brains in the country, rather than lose them to other countries. He called on African governments to invest in education and create a system that would encourage young people to stay and contribute to their societies.

This would require governments to create an environment that fosters innovation and creativity, provides access to funding and investment opportunities, and fosters a culture of entrepreneurship.

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According to the President, the issue of brain drain is not just about retaining the best brains but also about empowering young people to become productive members of society. He called on African governments to create opportunities for young people to express themselves freely and contribute to society’s growth and development.

He emphasized that young people have a lot of untapped potentials and that with the right investments, they could take their countries to great heights.

He said, “You can do a lot that can enrich you and will enrich others. There is so much trapped in us that we have not been able to bring out to take us to those great heights that we should be reaching.”

The loss of skilled and educated individuals has far-reaching implications for developing countries, hindering economic growth and development. However, as President Kagame emphasized, the solution to brain drain is not to stop individuals from leaving their countries but to provide an environment that encourages them to stay.

African governments need to invest in education, innovation, and entrepreneurship to create a system that would enable young people to express themselves freely and contribute to society’s growth and development. Brain drain is a symptom of a more profound problem that needs to be addressed.

Straight out of Twitter