Good governance a key catalyst for peace and security - Kagame

President Paul Kagame has said that there is no way to build sustainable peace and security, both within and between Europe and Africa without putting governance at the centre.

The head of state shared the remarks at the ongoing Europe-Africa summit in Belgium on Thursday February 17.

Kagame was participating in a roundtable discussion on peace, security and governance where leaders discussed the need for a new approach towards addressing security challenges and achieving sustainable peace.

“Good politics and governance are like a healthy human body. Where governance is compromised, it is like having a weak immune system which is vulnerable to all kinds of opportunistic infections or attacks,” he said.

The head of state added that both continents can’t afford to stand aside and watch when lives of innocent civilians are at risk.

“Europe’s stability is also at stake. We are neighbours and the threats are transnational and cross-border.”

“We need new thinking and new templates for joint action on counterterrorism and peace support operations.”

A meaningful relationship

According to President Kagame, there is need for a relationship between the European Union and the African Union that is meaningful and produces concrete results.

“We need each other, and that means working as full partners.”

Each conflict has its own context but there are tangible results to point to, he highlighted.

But, “A more predictable and sustainable international financing system for bilateral and regional military interventions is needed.”

However, the head of state pointed out that no amount of troops or funding can create sustainable peace.

“We must simultaneously address the shortfalls in governance, which are the root cause of insecurity.”

“A blended bilateral and multilateral approach is a flexible formula that is well-suited to our present challenges.”

The ongoing summit, which is the 6th edition gives European and African leaders the opportunity to lay the foundations for a renewed and deeper partnership, according to officials.

During this year’s meeting, the leaders are expected to launch an ambitious Global Gateway Africa-Europe Investment Package, to step up investments in infrastructure, healthcare and education, taking into account global challenges, such as climate change and the current health crisis.

The EU-AU Summits take place traditionally every three years, alternating between Africa and Europe.