paul kagameThe Republic of Rwanda (or "Rwanda" for short) is a small landlocked country located a few degrees south of the Equator at the central part of Africa (just at the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo).

The Republic of Rwanda shares borders with the Republic of Uganda to the north, the Republic of Tanzania to the east, the Republic of Burundi to the south and DR Congo to the west.

The Republic of Rwanda has a total land area of about 26,338 squared kilometers (about 1,670sqkm of which is covered by water). Although Rwanda is landlocked, several great lakes span the country. Rwanda unlike most surrounding countries, is at high elevation with its geography dominated by mountains (especially in the west) and savannah in the east.

Rwanda has an estimated population of 14 million people with the population growth rate hovering around 2.3%. Just about 19% of Rwanda's total population lives in urban areas. Kigali, the capital of Rwanda, has an estimated metropolitan area population of 1.3 million people.

A greater part of Rwanda's population is into agriculture with the majority being subsistence farmers who grow crops and rear animals just to feed themselves and their families.

Although there are "3" major ethnic groups living in Rwanda today, Rwandans are drawn from just one cultural and linguistic group, the "Banyarwanda". Within this group there are three subgroups: the Hutu, Tutsi and Twa. The Twa are mostly forest-dwelling "pygmy" people who descended from Rwanda's earliest inhabitants. Scholars disagree on the origins of and differences between the Hutu and Tutsi. Some believe differences arrived as a result of former social caste structures within a single people.

 Kinyarwanda (official language, universal Bantu vernacular), French (official language), English (official language), Kiswahili, etc. are some of the major languages spoken in Rwanda today.

Christianity remains the most dominant religion in Rwanda today with over 90% of the population identifying as Christians. Roman Catholics make up about 56.5% of the population with Protestants forming about 26%. About 11.1% are Adventists. Muslims make up about 4.6% of the total population.

Rwanda just like its neighboring countries is blessed with abundance of natural resources such as gold, tin ore, tungsten ore, methane, hydropower, etc. However, despite the abundance of natural and human resources, just like its neighboring countries, Rwanda is crippled with so many political, social and developmental challenges.

Rwanda has a literacy rate of about 70.4% for the total population with the female literacy rate hovering around 64.7%. In other words, about 70.4% of Rwanda's population above the age 15 can at least read and write. Although this isn't too bad, education in Rwanda still falls below expectations compared to some of the other lower middle-income countries in Africa today.

Despite the abundance of human and natural resources in Rwanda, a huge portion of the population still lives below the international poverty line (living on less than $2.15 a day). Poverty in Rwanda is worse especially in the rural areas where the majority of the population lives.

Considering its total land area and population size, the Republic of Rwanda is one of the most overpopulated countries in Africa today. In fact, Rwanda is the most densely populated country on mainland Africa. Rwanda's population more than doubled between 1978 (4.8 million people) and 2012 (10.5 million people). Rwanda currently contains about 14 million people and the population is expected to grow at a faster rate in the next decade.

As mentioned earlier on, a greater part of Rwanda's population is into agriculture. However due to the overpopulation issue, fertile lands for farming are very hard to come by, and this also explains the rising tensions among the various factions who depend mostly on the land for survival.

The overpopulation issue is putting much pressure on the available limited resources. For example, the overpopulation issue in Rwanda is resulting in land degradation (the gradual deterioration of agricultural lands and forest reserves due mainly to human activities) which is not only affecting food production but also severely affecting wildlife population.

Poaching and deforestation (rampant cutting down of trees mostly for timber, firewood, charcoal, etc) are other human activities severely affecting wildlife population in Rwanda today. Rwanda is one of only two countries in the world where tourists can see mountain gorillas in all their glory. However, poaching and other human activities have severely affected mountain gorilla population to a point of extinction.

Rwanda has an HIV/AIDS Adults prevalence rate of 2.9%. Officially, there were more than 170000 people were living with HIV/AIDS in 2009 with about 4100 deaths recorded within the same year. Malaria, bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, yellow fever, etc. also continue to threaten several lives in Rwanda today.

Rwanda has witnessed huge progress the past two decades thanks to its peace and reconciliation efforts. In fact, a recent survey by UNDP indicated that the percentage of people living in poverty in Rwanda, has dropped by about 5.8% from 44.9% in 2011 to 39.1% in 2014. However, several Rwandans continue to wallow in poverty today.

According to Transparency International, Rwanda is one of the least corrupt countries in Africa today thanks to Rwanda's many anti-corruption policies and whistleblower protection laws. In fact, Rwanda was the 52nd least corrupt country out of 180 countries on the Transparency list in 2021. The United States was 43rd on that list. In other words, Rwanda, which once ranked on par with Russia and the Phillipines and suffered worse corruption than Yemen, Libya and Iran, has virtually eradicated major corruption. Transparency International now ranks Rwanda on par with the Czech Republic which is much better than Italy and Greece.

However, Rwanda is not corruption-free. Administrative and rampant corruption exists in some parts of the country due to the lack of enforcement of Rwanda's many anti-corruption policies and regulations.

Although the Republic of Rwanda is healing physically, the psychological effects of the 1994 genocide remains in the minds and souls of some Rwandans today.

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Wale Tokunbo
When it comes to black Africans, why is over population a concern? Look at India and China. The primary concern of Rwanda like any African country is to own, control and generate wealth from its resources.
andover plumbing
You will never own, control and generate wealth from your own resources now you have allowed China to own, control and generate wealth from your own resources. The resources and wealth generated will be off-shored to China with some of the wealth used to line the pockets of your corrupt authorities.
The major problem is not overpopulation it is tribalism and hatred of other Africans
Rwanda is one of the many countries that was able to deal with corruption. I have been going to Rwanda for many years now but trust me, corruption is one of their most feared crimes. There is no bad leadership and corruption in that country. If so, we wouldn't all (foreigners) be going to live there.
Rwanda is the scariest country that I've ever been to. It has no political opposition as they've ever been put inside a prison, or they ran away to other countries. There's so much poverty in Rwanda and this causes other problems like theft, murder and rape. Many people talk about body parts being stolen. They say there's no real policing. It's all done with the army. It's a very young democracy and hopefully one day it might get better but probably not with this government
you really need to rethink about you said sir, and you need to brainwash yourself because you don't really know what you're talking about. visit our country and see its beauty, it's people and unity between them after the Genocide. you really need God's hand to help you think positively not in a such way.
Pure lie I am Rwandan by nationality and live in Rwanda, Simon speaks lies Rwanda is not a frightening and loss of body parts, Great African country with supportive policies, visioned politics and functioning leaders are great there are no force or armed opposition there pure and genuine freedom to everyone, Long live to our leading government,
God's Bae
I actually don't know when you have been in Rwanda but before you say that it is the scariest country you have been to, first make research on real scariest countries Rwanda send its soldiers to.
Doris Gloor
Rwanda, praised by the USA & most European countries. The truth is that, you can't tell the truth or disappear. Development on the highest scale possible and the most vulnerable people just moved away without being asked. This is a crime towards human beings & none of the countries ever mention it. Next Step is development in the beautiful environment of the Twin Lakes. Of course upscale Tourism & the people will be dislocated, whether they want or not. And you dare to say, it's an uncorrupted country. Hypocrites everywhere!
I disagree with this article saying that here in our country there are still ethics or races no, we are all Rwandans and next time you want to post articles like this about our country firstly visit and post what you're sure about. And one other thing I disagree is that yellow fever, malaria and other diseases mentioned above are still a problem to our country because our government built a very strong medication.