On Monday, 23 September 2019, a delegation of Members of Parliament from Namibia National Council, who are in Rwanda for a benchmarking visit paid a courtesy call on the President of the Senate, Rt. Hon. Bernard Makuza.
The Namibia Parliamentarians are in two (2) Standing Committees including the Standing Committee on Urban and Rural Development and Standing Committee on Gender, Youth and ICT.
Explaining the objective of their visit to Rwanda, the Head of delegation, Hon. Petrus Kavhura who is also the Chairman of the Standing Committee on Urban and Rural Development said that the essence of the visit is to carry out a benchmarking visit to the Parliament of Rwanda on the provision of serviced land and low-cost housing as the Istanbul Declaration, 1996 states that : “Everyone should have adequate shelter that is healthy, safe, secure, accessible and affordable and that includes basic services, facilities, and amenities, and should enjoy freedom from discrimination, in housing and legal security of tenure”.
"The Committee's overall goal of the mission is to look into the best practices by Rwanda in terms of policies and regulation for the provision of serviced land and low-cost housing, while the specific objectives are legislation and policies that guide mortgages funding; Policies on the provision of land; Slump upgrade models and initiatives; Low-cost housing models; Cost-effective building solutions and materials", He said.
He also noted that lack of decent housing continues to be one of the most contentious issues in Namibia which is identified as a priority by Namibian Government.
In his remarks, President of the Senate appreciated the tour of the members of Namibia Parliament which enabled them to have a constructive interaction for the benefits of the two institutions in particular and the two countries in general.
He also said that as legislators, they are called to play an important role in conjunction with governments to enhance bilateral relations and ties of friendship between the two countries.
"In line with the objectives and the vision of the African Union, Parliamentary partnerships must contribute to the efforts of our respective governments, strengthen economic integration and promote investments and trade among the African States", he said. "Indeed, we have the ability to do more for our countries, but we can achieve even better, together. Today, more than ever, collaboration among African countries is not a choice. It is imperative, in real terms", he added.
The President of the Senate also noted that the visit of Members of Parliament of Namibia to Rwanda is an opportunity to share experiences, exchange ideas, and learn from each other as Senators, in order to contribute to “a desired Africa” for the population and future generations.
After meeting the President of the Senate, the Namibia Parliamentarians had discussions with their Rwandan counterpart form Standing Committee on Economic Development and Finance and Standing Committee on Social Affairs and Human Rights where they were explained more about the function of the Parliament of Rwanda both Chambers and how the Senate of Rwanda works in particular.
Members of Namibian National Council are in Rwanda for a one-week study tour where they expect to meet different institutions that deal with different sectors including Gender, Youth, and ICT, rural and urban development. They will also have guided tour countrywide to see different activities that promote community lives.