KIGALI, 15 January 2021 – The chief economist of Rwanda’s Central Bank, Thomas Kigabo, has died from complications from COVID-19.

He is the first senior government official to die from the new coronavirus in Rwanda.

Kigabo died at a hospital in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, where he was receiving treatment.

He had been chief economist at Rwanda’s Central Bank for ten years.

He led Rwanda’s delegation as chief negotiator to the East African Monetary Union in 2010.

Rwanda Central Bank Chief Economist Thomas Kigabo

Rwandan Central Bank Chief Economist Prof. Thomas Kigabo – Photo The New Times

Kigali-based The New Times newspaper on Friday credited him with playing “an important role in the formulation and implementation” of Rwanda’s “national monetary policy, which has helped to keep inflation in check and strengthen the country’s financial sector”.

During his service at the Central Bank, he continued to teach econometrics, monetary economics, applied mathematics and macroeconomics at the University of Rwanda and Jomo Kenyatta University in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.

A former vice-chancellor of Kigali Independent University and a part-time preacher, Prof. Kigabo held a PhD in monetary, finance and international economics from the University of Lyon, France, and a Masters in applied mathematics.

He is survived by his widow and four children.

Rwanda has recorded 10,316 cases of COVID-19, with 133 deaths and 6,974 full recoveries.

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