Rwanda has been elected to head the Regional Committee on Prevention of Genocide, War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity and all forms of discrimination.
Dr Deogene Bideri, the acting Director General of Research and Documentation centre on Genocide in Rwanda, was last weekend nominated as the president of the committee during the second International Conference on Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) summit in Zanzibar.
The committee was enacted by the constitution of the Pact for Peace, Security, Stability and Development in the Great Lakes Region universally signed by member states in Dar er Salam, Tanzania in 2004, when an International Conference on Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) was also instituted.
Speaking to The New Times yesterday, Bideri observed: “I am happy that I have been elected to chair this committee because this is an opportunity for Rwanda to share its vast experience in issues concerning genocide prevention and crimes against humanity with other countries in the region”.
He said that electing a Rwandan national would result in the strengthening of judicial systems in the region as well as easily track down Rwandan genocide fugitives.
Bideri added that during the summit, participants resolved to enact laws that punish Genocide crimes and its ideology that bind all member countries.
He further noted that cooperation among member countries will include prevention of genocide crimes, trying perpetrators as well as extraditing them to countries in which they committed the crime.
“Rwanda has a lot to teach the world about fighting against Genocide and its related crimes. For instance, our country has a law that punishes Genocide crimes on top of setting up the National Commission for the fight against the Genocide (CNLG),” Bideri noted.
He observed that the appointment was also an opportunity to share how best to address various challenges concerning fighting Gender violence and promotion of good governance.
Headquartered in Bujumbura, Burundi, the committee consists of various experts from the 11 member countries. They include Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic, Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Sudan, Tanzania, and Zambia.
According to Dr. Bideri, the committee is also tasked to handle important activities in the region that range from overseeing all activities related to the Crimes of Genocide, War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity and all forms of discrimination within the member countries of ICGLR.