MPs to hold public debates on democracy

In a bid to sensitise the population on their role in the democratization process, the Parliament intends to deploy all Senators and Members of Parliament in all districts to hold public debates on the status of democracy in Rwanda.
Hon. Marie Mukantabana (L) and deputy speaker Dr. Damascene Ntawukuriryayo during the press conference (Photo; T. Kisambira)
Hon. Marie Mukantabana (L) and deputy speaker Dr. Damascene Ntawukuriryayo during the press conference (Photo; T. Kisambira)

In a bid to sensitise the population on their role in the democratization process, the Parliament intends to deploy all Senators and Members of Parliament in all districts to hold public debates on the status of democracy in Rwanda.
The occasion is in line with the International Day of Democracy that falls on September 15. However, the national celebrations will be marked on September 29.

This was announced by the vice president of the Senate, Marie Mukantabana, during a press briefing on preparations to mark the day.

“There are several categories of people that the lawmakers will hold talks with, and they include local leaders, civil society, religious leaders, teachers and representatives of political parties among others,” she said.

“This will also be an opportunity for everybody to make proposals and table their views regarding democracy”.
She, however, hastened to mention that this will not be redefining democracy, but instead informing Rwandans about their rights, and the laws that protect them.

“Basing on the parliamentary rating, so far, Rwanda is performing well with regard to democracy” said the vice president.

In 2007, the United Nations General Assembly decided to observe September 15 as the International Day of Democracy and invited all member states and organizations to commemorate the day in an appropriate manner that contributes to raising public awareness.

“We were supposed to have marked this day on September 15, but due to several urgent matters that came up, we postponed it to September 29,” said Mukantabana.

The Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Dr. Jean Damascene Ntawukuriryayo, said that the constitution clearly defines Rwandan democracy, but the problem is that people don’t know the laws that protect them.

He called on the general public to take part in building a firm democratic nation, saying Rwanda no longer needs observers of democracy.

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