The month-long countrywide community policing art and culture competition dedicated towards crime prevention climaxed yesterday as Rwanda National Police (RNP) continues the drive from fighting to crime prevention.
The competition centered on two disciplines; songs and poems with focus on fighting drug abuse, child pregnancies, gender based violence, child abuse and human trafficking, among others.
At least ten artistes from different parts of the country made it to the national level in an event held at Amahoro Petit stadium and presided over by the Minister of Sports and Culture, Julienne Uwacu.
The colourful event was held under the theme: The role of artistes in crime prevention.
Present at the event was also the State Minister for Constitutional Affairs, Evode Uwizeyimana, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Emmanuel K. Gasana, UN-Women Representative in Rwanda, Fatou Lo, Deputy Prosecutor General Agnes Mukagashugi, Deputy Secretary General-Rwanda Investigations Bureau (RIB), Isabelle Kalihangabo and Director General of National Itorero Commission Edouard Bamporiki, among others.
It was also attended by various youth groups including students, youth volunteers in community policing and motorcyclists.
Uruyenzi troupe and Heri Jean Claude won the competition in songs and poems, respectively, walking away with grand prizes that include money and certificates of merits. All participants also received varied prizes that also include money.
Minister Iwacu commended the impact of culture and art in crime prevention as “mass mobilization and awareness tools that influence mindset change and instills the culture of responsiveness.”
“Rwanda is a fast developing country and we know where there are no counter-measures such development also comes with criminality. We have achieved a lot in deterring lawlessness but we still have other serious issues that affect especially the young people; narcotic drugs, child pregnancies, gender based violence and human trafficking,” Minister Uwacu said.
She added: “Providing information that leads to fighting crime is a good community policing gesture but information that leads to preventing crime from being committed is a step ahead towards crime-free communities.”
The state Minister for Constitutional Affairs, Evode Uwizeyimana, observed that criminality goes a long way to affect many people, making it a duty of everyone to report crimes or unlawful acts including corruption and injustices in their communities and places of work.
IGP Gasana commended all partners and the general public for their role in fighting crimes, which he attributed to the low level of criminality and safety the country enjoys today. He also thanked all the artistes that took part in the competition adding that their talents will go a long way to convey messages and educate the people on community policing.
“Identifying, fighting, investigating, preventing crime, and responding in time to those affecting requires strong partnership as an individual and collectively. The existing partnership has laid a solid ground to build on and to shift towards crime prevention rather than dealing with the consequences of crime,” IGP Gasana said.
On her part, Fatou lauded RNP for the “professional manner” in discharging their duties, which she added “it makes the country safe and orderly.”
The 2018 Gallup Global Law and Order report ranked Rwanda the second safest country in Africa where people have confidence in their Police and safe walking at night.
The 2017/2018 World Economic Forum Global Competitive Index also ranked Rwanda the first country in Africa and 13th globally where citizens trust and rely on their Police services.
Fatou also commended the work done through the RNP human security activities and pledged continued support in cementing the philosophy of people-centred policing.
She further thanked the Government of Rwanda for recognizing the role of women in peacekeeping and the recently deployed women-majority Police continent to South Sudan.