NGOMA — Women in the country have been urged to overcome the perception that certain activities are a preserve of men, but rather know that they are just as capable of doing what a man does.
They were also urged to engage in activities that would make them active partners in development like their male counterparts.
The appeal was made by Ngoma district vice mayor in charge of social affairs, Josephine Mutesayire, over the weekend during celebrations to mark this year’s International Women’s Day, at Cyasemakamba stadium in Kibungo sector under the theme "Investing in women and girls."
She called upon women to be more active in day today activities that would improve their economic status, but reminded men to be supportive of their spouses in whatever they are doing.
"Like you men need women to back you in your developmental activities, so do women, because women are the heart of the families," Mutesayire said.
"But this does not mean that men are excluded. Such a day [Women’s Day] is meant for people to exchange ideas on how both partners can cooperate to develop themselves,"
She noted that the day was not exclusively for the female gender, but also men and children. She urged women to embrace the country’s programmes especially the ongoing Green Revolution. Mutesayire urged women to get loans from banks which will help them start small income generating activities so that they can stop being dependants.
Francois Niyotwagira, the district mayor, urged women to campaign for the country’s peace, unity and equal rights.
He called upon parents and teachers to put much effort in stemming Genocide ideology in homes and schools.
"Students’ conduct depends on either teachers or parents or both," Niyotwagira said.
He urged parents to be gender supportive by enrolling all children in school without discrimination. "Both boys and girls should be treated equally be it enrolling them to school or in doing domestic chores," he said.
"The tendency of favoring only boys most especially for education should stop."
Meanwhile, EP Mbuye Primary School was awarded a cheque of Frw1 million for emerging the best school in the campaign for the girls’ rights and education.
EP Gatare came second and walked away with Frw500, 000 cheque. Among the secondary schools, ES Sake won in the same category and was also rewarded with Frw1million, followed by GSZAZA/ENP TTC which also got Frw500, 000.
Also rewarded were the schools that performed better in the 2006 and 2007 national exams both primary and secondary.
Les Hirondelles Primary School, which emerged the best in both 2006 and 2007, and came first in the eastern province in 2007, was rewarded Frw200, 000, while Petit Seminaire Zaza, which emerged the best in senior three exams was rewarded Frw100, 000.
Cultural dances performed by different schools in the district made the event colorful.