[Abuja, April 7] Speaking on the 22nd Rwandan Genocide Memorial Day, the Founder-President of the Wellbeing Foundation Africa (WBFA), Her Excellency, Mrs Toyin Saraki, today, reminded all of the calamity and loss that Rwanda suffered, but also how the country later attained ultimate triumph in the protection and empowerment of women and girls, including through advancements in access to health and education.
“Rwanda’s national week of mourning commences today, and all of Africa joins her,” Mrs Saraki said, “Any loss of innocent life is a grave injustice, and the loss of many is calamitous. The Rwandan Genocide brought great suffering to many of her most vulnerable civilians, including women and girls.”
In support of the United Nations global action to achieve gender equality through the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Mrs Saraki praised Rwanda’s institutional protections for the rights of women and girls, which were enacted following the genocide.
“Though there will always be grief for her suffering, Rwanda, like her people, refuses to remain fractured. Today, Rwanda is lauded worldwide as a champion for gender equality – not just in Africa, but across the globe. Rwanda has inspired nations near and far to follow her lead in ensuring equal leadership opportunities for women across all political, economic, and public spheres,” Mrs Saraki said.
Her Excellency, Mrs Toyin Saraki with staff of the Kigali Memorial Centre, during her visit to Rwanda in 2015. The Memorial Centre is an archival centre for the Rwandan Genocide, in which thousands of lives were lost in a major massacre.
“Rwanda’s modern Constitution galvanises the rights of women in infallible ink. Rwanda’s governmental target for female representation by 2020 is forty percent. Female citizens are legally entitled to own land. Rwanda’s girls have equal access to education as its boys. From a grisly footnote in this great nation’s history, women are now viewed as more than political pawns or victims of violence; they are recognised as the very lifeblood of an equal, equitable Rwanda.”
[The Wellbeing Foundation Africa]