Rwanda: South Sudanese Political, Military Leaders in Rwanda for Peacebuilding Course

30 November 2021

Twenty-five high-ranking political and military leaders from South Sudan on Monday, November 29 started a post-conflict seminar at the Rwanda Peace Academy in Musanze District.

They include four ministers, four members of parliament and 16 military generals.

The five-day seminar, titled "Senior Leadership Post-Conflict Peacebuilding, Reconstruction and Stabilization Course," is organised by the Rwanda Peace Academy (RPA) in partnership with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and the Reconstituted Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (RJMEC).

The participants will learn from Rwanda's post-conflict peacebuilding process.

At the official opening of the seminar, Vincent Biruta, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said that reconciliation and peacebuilding were crucial in Rwanda's journey after the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

"In Rwanda, reconciliation and peacebuilding processes have played a crucial role in resolving political and perceived ethnic differences which enabled the political leadership to ensure that people live in peace," Biruta, who presided over the ceremony, said

Stressing that peacebuilding is a long-lasting process, Biruta added: "It is my hope that you conclude this seminar with a renewed collective commitment to transition to a post-conflict environment that guarantees sustainable socio-economic development for the benefit of your peoples."

The training is the second of its kind to be attended by South Sudanese officials at the RPA.

In May this year, 25 South Sudanese generals attended another training on post-conflict nation-building and peacebuilding.

Col (Rtd) Jill Rutaremara, the Director of Rwanda Peace Academy, said the seminar was organised in order to enhance the capacity of South Sudanese senior military and political leaders in post-conflict nation-building.

"The participants will discuss a number of issues related to post-conflict peacebuilding, reconstruction and stabilisation of South Sudan. They will also share lessons learned and best practices from Rwanda as well as from the region on the role played by political, security and civil society leaders in post-conflict peacebuilding, reconstruction and stabilization," Rutaremara said.

During the week of training, the South Sudanese officials said they would draw lessons from Rwanda that will help them as they implement a peace agreement to stabilise their own country.

"Rwanda has gone through conflict similar to our own conflict. We think that the work done by Rwandans themselves to achieve peace, community integration and institutional building is what we need to learn from," said Martin Elia Lomuro, South Sudan's Minister of Cabinet Affairs.

According the RPA, the participants have visited the Kigali Genocide Memorial, the Kinigi model village, and the Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) Centre in Mutobo, Musanze District.

They also visited the One Stop Border Post in Rubavu District where they were briefed on border operations.

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