The Government and the Kingdom of the Netherlands yesterday signed an agreement, where the latter committed Euro 20 million (about Rwf17 billion) toward efforts to boost the Judiciary.
The grant will support Justice, Reconciliation, Law and Order Sector (JLOS) and help strengthen the rule of law, promote good governance and a culture of peace, according to Finance and Economic Planning minister Claver Gatete.
“Justice sector strategies are a direct translation of the main second Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS2). Justice-related priorities and the purpose of the Sector is to strengthen the rule of law, while promoting accountable governance and a culture of peace,” Amb. Gatete said during the signing ceremony in Kigali yesterday.
“This will greatly contribute to socio-economic development and enhance poverty reduction as prescribed in EDPRS2 blueprint.”
The grant will be disbursed in four installments spanning from 2014 to 2018, with each installment transferred every year. The first batch is expected next month.
“We want to uplift our justice sector to international standards,” Gatete added.
Leoni Cuelenaere, the Dutch ambassador to Rwanda, said her country considers a well-functioning and independent justice system to be the backbone of democracy.
“This is part of the sector budget support to JLOS, which we believe will further contribute to its justice system in order to address the needs of the Rwandan people,” Amb. Cuelenaere told The New Times.
Justice for democracy
She said The Netherlands believes Rwanda will use the support appropriately, adding that a well functioning justice sector is the foundation of any democracy.
The envoy added that the Netherlands will continue sharing its experience on judicial matters with Rwanda in areas of capacity building, academia and research.
This support will go to the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internal Security, the Judiciary, the prosecution, as well as the Police, the correctional services, the National Human Rights Commission and the Ombudsman’s office, among others, Isabelle Kalihangabo, the permanent secretary and solicitor-general at the Ministry of Justice, said.