The President of Rwanda, Paul Kagame, has urged Parliaments across the world to work together to combat the growing ideology of dehumanisation, genocide and racism, which according to him threatened peace and democracy.
He intimated that genocide denial and reversionism were fast becoming a growing threat to peace and security globally and also Acknowledged that social media was partly responsible for all those forms of threats, adding that hate speech and misinformation, which had existed for a long time, played a major role.
“Collaboration between Parliaments is needed to work on all these challenges to criminalise all forms of dehumanisation and racism worldwide,” he stated.

More collaboration
Speaking at the inaugural ceremony of the 145TH Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) assembly in Kigali today (Oct 11), Mr Kagame said “When we think that all the problems of dehumanisation, genocide and reversion are confined to Africa, we immediately realise that other parts of the world are going through similar challenges that affect peace and democracy
“What a better way then can we think of to find solutions than through cooperation. And I think we need to work together more and more,” he said.
The six-day event is being held on the theme “Gender equality and gender-sensitive parliaments as drivers of change for a more resilient and peaceful world”.
It has brought together about 1,200 delegates, including some 60 Speakers and deputy Speakers of Parliaments from 120 Parliament across the world.
The participants include the Speaker of Ghana’s Parliament, Alban Sumana Bagbin, and five MPs from the country.
The assembly will facilitate the exchange ideas on good practices to make Parliaments more gender-sensitive, encouraging the legislature to spearhead transformative actions and curb the proliferation of terrorism, the impact of war and atrocity on civilian populations.

Shared humanity
The Rwandan leader said there was no individual country or region in the world that could to have all the solutions to the diverse threats against global peace and security.
He, therefore, emphasised the need for Parliaments and nations to work together to improve democracy and peace, saying that “if we do not it through cooperation, I do not think we can achieve anything,” he stated.
Mr Kagame also expressed the view that no country or people could assume that they had it all and they could tell others what they should be doing.
“It does not work like that and it is not the reality of the world that we live in. Solidarity in the fight against genocide ideology however marched more than enacting laws.
“It is about recognition of our shared humanity for the betterment of our societies and the protection of future generations,” he said.

Women empowerment
Mr Kagame told the assembly that all over the world Parliaments existed to protect the interests of citizens, an objective that could not be met without the full and active participation of women in Parliaments, especially in leadership positions.
In his view, despite study gains made over the years, equality between women and men continued to be widespread.
He explained how certain cultures took “us a step” close to equal representation but did not address the full spectrum of inequalities in Parliaments and in society at large.
“Gender equality is better achieved when we acknowledge that it is a right for everyone everywhere.
“Women are the backbone of resilient and peaceful societies; we need strong legal and policy frameworks in place with an emphasis on implementation and results,” he said.
Citing the important roles women played in Rwanda’s liberation struggle, he said women remained a fundamental part of Rwanda’s transformation journey, with women participation in peacekeeping missions across the African continent.

Let’s work together
The President of IPU, Duarte Pacheco, also reiterate the urgent need for Parliament to work together to solve problems facing in humanity much the same way the world worked together to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.
Constitutional imperative
The Speaker of Deputies of Parliament of Rwanda, Donatille Mukabalisa, said in Rwanda promoting gender and women in leadership was a constructional imperative.
She was happy that today there was a strong political commitment at the highest level and adequate measures were taken to boost gender equality and women in political participation and empowerment.

@ A glance
The high-level meeting of the 145th Inter-Parliamentary Union opened in Kigali, Rwanda, today, with a call on Parliaments to enact laws to criminalise all forms of dehumanisation and racism.

Source: Nana Konadu Agyeman/Rwanda

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