The State Minister for Legal and Constitutional Affairs has urged new Members of Parliament to dedicate their time to making good laws for the country.
Evode Uwizeyimana made the call yesterday while coaching new MPs in the Chamber of Deputies on how to best draft laws made in Rwanda for Rwandans and other residents in th country.
The MPs, who wrapped up a two-week induction yesterday, will start their work in earnest on Friday this week, about two weeks since they were sworn in.
“We will need to dedicate enough time to make laws. You can’t design laws when you are on a rush,” Uwizeyimana told the legislators.
He encouraged them to always feel free to give him and other officials in the Government a call while assessing bills in case they need any kind of clarifications because working together for the common interests of citizens will be crucial for enacting good laws.
He reminded the MPs that they have every right to get in touch with any officials in the Government whenever they need clarifications even on a weekend or any other free time as public servants should always be ready to serve citizens.
“The country doesn’t stop working because it’s a Sunday,” he said.
During the last two weeks, the new MPs were briefed on various things, including on the status and rationale behind different government policies and strategies such as the National Strategy for Transformation (NST1), how the country’s budget is prepared, and how Parliament oversees government’s activities among other topics.
The MPs will hold their first session on Friday when they will start the House’s third ordinary session of the year.
The Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, Donatille Mukabalisa, said that the two-week induction has helped the newly sworn-in MPs to better understand their role as lawmakers and people’s representatives, explaining that they all understand that they are in the House to represent citizens.
“What we discussed will help us fulfil our responsibilities. This training once again showed us that we are here to represent Rwandans who sent us to speak on their behalf,” she said.
She said that the MPs will start their work when they have a common understanding of where the country is coming from and were ready to contribute in taking it forward.
“We need to keep in mind that we have to protect public interests in everything that we do. We are hopeful that we will deliver as expected during this five-year term that we have started,” she said.
The Lower Chamber of Parliament is made up of 80 members, 53 of whom are drawn from political parties or independents, 24 representing women (elected through the National Women Council structures), two youth representatives, and one representative of people with disabilities.
The third ordinary session of the year for Parliament which will start October 5 for both deputies and senators will end on December 4 when MPs will take a break.