Rwanda celebrated World Population Day with a commitment to invest more in sexual and reproductive health. The theme of this year’s World Population Day is “Access to Sexual and Reproductive Health information and services, a smart investment in young people.” The ceremony took place at Kabuga Youth Centre, Gasabo District.
The Director General of Development Planning in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, Mr. Godfrey Kabera urged young people to use services offered by youth centres and health centres to safeguard their health. “We do not want any Rwandan to lag behind in development because of avoidable things like contracting the HIV virus, unwanted pregnancy, drug abuse and many others,” he said. He said that while government with the support of development partners provides health facilities, young people are fully responsible for the choices they make regarding their health.
The UNFPA representative a.i Mr. Attaher Maiga applauded the Government of Rwanda for its commitment to the welfare of young people in all possible areas including education, health as well as economic wellbeing. He said that more investment is needed in the area of sexual and reproductive health.
“Investing in young people today by promoting healthy habits and ensuring education and employment opportunities, access to health services, and social security coverage for all workers is the best investment to improve the lives of future generations,” he said. “Investments in young people are in everyone’s interest and are everyone’s responsibility: families, community leaders, nongovernmental organizations, the private sector and the international community.”
The ceremony was attended by hundreds of young people, local and central government officials, staff of UN agencies and representatives of local NGOs.
Other WPD commemoration ceremonies
Apart from celebrations at Kabuga Youth Centre, separate commemoration activities will take place in Ngororero, Rubavu, Rusizi, Nyamasheke and Karongi Districts of the Western Province.