NEW YORK — Twenty years after a three-month genocide ravaged their country, Rwandan women have rebuilt — playing some of the most powerful roles in the reconstruction of the African nation.
Today, Rwanda is ranked first in the world — of 189 countries placed by the Inter-Parliamentary Union — for women’s representation in parliament. Holding down 51 of the 80 lower or single house parliamentary seats, women make up 63 percent of the governing body as of the country’s last elections in September of 2013.
This is a sharp incline, considering that in November of 1994, four months after the end of the genocide, women accounted for just 17 percent of parliament. And it was a necessary step toward recovery, according to Ambassador Fatuma Ndangiza, deputy chief executive officer for the Rwanda Governance Board.