The Institute of Research and Dialogue for Peace (IRDP), a Rwandan think-tank that promotes unity through research, yesterday opened a documentation centre that will host its archives and other peace building initiatives.
The building that was named ‘Peace Centre’ is equipped with a conference room, an audio-visual centre for the production of films, and a documentation room where IRDP works will be kept.
The construction was sponsored by the Japanese government at a tune of Rwf 149 million and IRDP said the it will become a meeting place for peace initiatives.
“Peace is just like air. Without it, there is no life,” said the Japanese Ambassador to Rwanda, Shigeo Iwatani, at the opening of the centre.
IRDP has been conducting research in Rwanda on issues ranging from understanding democracy, the rule of law, Rwandan history, and the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi.
The findings and recommendations from the IRDP’s research are normally handed over to the government and members of the civil society for consideration.
“Our strength is that we bring together both leaders and the people in discussions and each side gets a chance to listen to the other about governance issues,” said Professor Pierre Rwanyindo, the IRDP Director.
The institute’s activities have helped to inform some of government’s decisions and the Minister of Local government, Protais Musoni, pledged more support to its work calling for the promotion of more initiatives from the civil society.
“The government appreciates the insights, advice and recommendations in the peace building process,” he said at the launch of the centre.
He admitted in an interview with journalists that some of the IRDP’s research has helped government in some of its plans, such as designing laws on elections in the country and programmes against corruption and improvement of service delivery.
The ‘Peace Centre’ which was built in Gisozi, Gasabo District, is also expected to host offices of the seven-year old IRDP.
It is expected to become a meeting area for researchers, artists, academics and other people working in the promotion of peace, Rwanyindo said.