Rule of Law Quick Scan Rwanda

Authored by Roelof H. Haveman, published in 2012

The Rule of Law in Rwanda: Prospects and Challenges

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After a description of the main institutions of the justice sector, including some home grown initiatives, and the context in which they operate – history, the 1994 genocide, politics, religion and economics – this report highlights some major positive trends as well as some concerns.

The positive trends mentioned are: the low level of corruption, the way the judiciary developed from almost non-existent into a more professional and efficient power within the state, the efforts made in order to create a fair justice system, and the great strides forward made with respect to access to justice through legal aid.

Challenges for Rwanda with respect to the Rule of Law include: the way genocide ideology has been criminalised in the law and is implemented in practice, the curtailment of the freedom of press, independence of the judiciary in particular in high profile cases, and the fairness of the gacaca.