Members of the European Parliament’s committee on women’s rights and gender equality are currently in the country on a four-day visit. They are engaging with their counterparts of the Rwandan Parliament on the best practices in the promotion of the rights of women and gender equality.
The delegation, that comprises eight members of the European Parliament, arrived on Monday. Five of them come from Spain, two from the U.K and one from Belgium.
This is the committee’s first visit outside the European Union, and according to Iraxte Garcia Perez, the chairperson of the committee, Rwanda was chosen due to its exemplary record on issues concerning women’s rights and gender equality.
Speaking to the media, yesterday, at the Parliament in Kigali, she said that the two sides will share experiences with an aim of further improving the situation of women’s rights.
“We were speaking about the common position and the empowerment of women in our societies; their access to employment, human rights, education and medical services is very important. We will get to know the situation of the women in Rwanda, the different policies in place to empower them and we shall explain our European strategies to improve the situation of women,” she said.
Besides meeting with the political and gender committee and women parliamentarians forum, yesterday, the European MPs also had a guided tour of the Parliament, paid a courtesy call on the Speaker, Donatille Mukabalisa, and visited Kigali Genocide memorial centre.
The delegation also includes U.K’s Julie Ward, an outspoken parliamentarian.
They will also meet with the Minister for Gender and Family Promotion, and heads of the Gender Monitoring Office, the National Women Council, and different UN agencies.
According to Speaker Mukabalisa, the visit will be an opportunity for Rwanda to showcase its achievements not only in women empowerment but also in political, economic and social spheres.
She said it will also help them to see the truth about the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi since there are some people in Europe that deny it.
“When they come to the country they see for themselves the reality of how far our country has come,” she said.