Rwanda Focus (Kigali)

28 January 2013

Rwanda: Judges Upgrade Knowledge On Human Rights

More than 30 judges from Muhanga intermediate and primary courts are upgrading their skills on human right issues.

Fabienne Kabagambe, the president of Muhanga intermediate court, said that the two-day workshop is aimed at enhancing the knowledge of judges in international human rights.

"Judges are the first actors to implement human rights," Kabagambe pointed out. "We have to make sure that human rights are protected. There are for instance the right of defense or presumption of innocence - these are fundamental human rights that we always have to uphold."

She noted that the workshop will be an occasion to discuss different international treaties on human rights and the best practices in domestic courts for the benefit of people.

However, Kabagambe noted that lack of awareness about these fundamental human rights by citizens remains the major challenge; which requires another effort to sensitize people about their rights.

"I have never seen any child coming to us for instance filing a case for being denied his rights to education or to medical care," she pointed out.

The ministry of justice has been conducting an annual legal aid week where judiciary staff go around the country for sensitization and providing legal services.

The human rights training is conducted by the Supreme Court in collaboration with the Institute of Legal Practice and Development (ILPD) and UNDP.

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