Kwibohora 27: Rwanda’s envoy to Belgium talks about his journey of transformation | New times
Rwandans living in Belgium and Luxembourg on Sunday July 4 converged both physically and virtually to celebrate Liberation Day, an event that was marked by learning about Rwanda’s journey of liberation and transformation.
Rwandan Ambassador to Belgium Dieudonné Rugambwa Sebashongore explained that July 4, 1994 marked the end of a 100-day genocide against the Tutsi which claimed more than a million victims and whose remains are still found 27 years later.
Explaining to the audience the immediate tasks of the RPF following the liberation struggle, he said;
“We had to take stock of the country, define a framework and create bodies dedicated to the implementation of the reconstruction of our nation. This framework was discussed during debates organized in the village of Urugwiro between 1998 and 1999 which prepared the ground for the new constitution, adopted by the people in 2003 ”, he declared.
In terms of governance, he said, they were faced with the challenge of restoring justice while keeping in mind the unity and reconciliation of the people.
“We have found solutions in tradition and our traditional Gacaca courts,” he said, referring to the judicial system in which nearly two million cases of genocide and related crimes have been tried.
He said that another endemic problem that the new government wanted to nip in the bud was corruption, leading to the establishment of the Ombudsman’s Office which helped regulate obstacles to economic development.
Economically, he said, the Rwanda Revenue Authority was created to improve tax administration and gradually allow the country to finance its national budget and reduce its dependence on international aid. .
In the current budget, the implementation of which began at the beginning of this month, 67% of expenditure will be mobilized at the national level.
In terms of social development, the creation of social protection interventions such as the community health insurance scheme (Mutuelle de Santé) which allows every Rwandan to receive basic health care is an important step, he said. declared.
He added that locally inspired solutions such as the Ubudehe social stratification program and the Girinka one cow per family program have also helped reduce poverty.
The government, through the Rwanda Development Board (RDB), has also prioritized establishing a favorable business and investment climate for the private sector to thrive and catalyze overall economic growth.
Other notable achievements include gender equality, which the envoy noted has surpassed initial targets, with 61% women in parliament and over 50% in Cabinet.
He added that millions of people were lifted out of poverty.
Unity and reconciliation
Senator Marie-Rose Mureshyankwano, who addressed the participants virtually, reiterated that enormous progress has been made in promoting unity and reconciliation while healing genocide survivors.
She said that the Gacaca courts were not only used to bring the perpetrators of the genocide to justice, they also facilitated the country’s path to reconciliation.
The legislator noted other initiatives like Ndi-umunyarawanda as one of the local solutions that played a major role in unifying communities severely fractured by genocide.