Ingabire made the call on Tuesday, September 19, 2022, as she presided over the start of a week dedicated to gender equality and complementarity in Kirehe District of Eastern Province.
It was organized under the theme "Promoting the principle of gender equality, the foundation for good governance and sustainable development."
The planned activities were preceded by the civil marriage of 737 families that had been living together illegally.
It is expected that this week will end with the civil marriage of more than 2560 families.
Some of the residents of Kirehe District have revealed that there are men and women who do not understand the principle of gender equality and complementarity and asked the government to increase awareness.
Alice Uwizeyimanawho lives in Nyamugari Sector said that the principle of gender equality is generally good because it allows a woman and a man to work and grow together even though some women have misunderstood it.
"Even today, there are people who say that equality is not good. We, women, understand it quickly, but men see it as a disrespect to them. The government should conduct more training in the community, in churches, train women and men so that they understand the principle,” she said.
“You will find some women use equality, to harass men and others abuse them, and then some men don’t even go to report them to the leaders. There are many men you find being harassed but they decide to hold their ordeal inside of themselves. What should be done is to increase awareness among families,” said another resident identified as Sylvestre Birekeraho.
Marie Louise Uwineza from Bakora Sector said that gender equality and complementarity should be characterized by cooperation, noting that those who do not understand it well are the ones who make others see it in a negative aspect.
The Minister of State in the Ministry of Local Government, Assumpta Ingabire said that gender quality and complementarity provide equal opportunities and equal rights for both sexes.
“People do not understand the principle of gender equality and complementarity the same way. There are women who understand this in their own way and men who will interpret this differently. In few words, it is meant to give equal opportunities to all children, women and men. If it is a school, everyone participates, if it’s a competition everyone comes, everyone has rights,” she said.
Ingabire further urged women and men who misunderstand this to change their mindsets if they are to build the Rwandan community and attain envisaged development.
“A place where this is fully understood, where a man respects his wife, the woman values her husband; they understand each other, move forward, take care of their children and work for their home’s progress, That’s what we want. We don’t want people to get married and become a burden to the government,” she noted.