RWANDA – Experts from the Health Protection Department of the Italian Carabinieri have trained thirty people from different public institutions on food quality inspection at the Rwanda National Police (RNP) General Headquarters in Kacyiru.

The five-day course brought together participants from Rwanda National Police (RNP), Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB), Rwanda Food and Drugs Authority (RFDA), and the Ministry of Health.

The course focused on public health protection, principles of hazards analysis and critical control points, food safety and hygiene practices, and traceability. Others include food fraud investigations, how to conduct search, and food labelling legislation.

The course also involved field visits to restaurants and supermarkets to further enhance the trainees’ understanding of food safety standards.

The Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIGP) in charge of Administration and Personnel, Jeanne Chantal Ujeneza noted that cooperation and learning from others’ expertise and good practices is one way to overcome the concern of food quality, which she said is a global threat.

“The concern of food and drug quality is a global threat, and among the ways to overcome it, is through cooperation and learning from others’ expertise and good practices.

It is in this view that the RNP, through the usual cooperation with the Carabinieri, organized this course with the main purpose of acquainting trainees with the necessary knowledge and skills with regard to food and drug safety,” she said.

The cooperation pact formalized in 2017 between RNP and Carabinieri, Italy’s equivalent of national police, highlights partnership in capacity development such as peace support operations, counter-terrorism, aviation security, public order management, VIP protection, cybercrime, traffic and road safety, environmental protection as well as acquisition of modern police equipment, among others.

“We hope the training will assist food businesses achieve the requirements of the food safety standards, provide food handlers with the necessary skills and knowledge on food safety and hygiene matters relevant to their work, raise the level of compliance with food legislations and the level of knowledge for food inspectors,” DIGP Ujeneza added.

The DIGP urged participants to apply and share the knowledge with others in order to achieve the common goal of ensuring safety of food and drugs for public health in the country.

On his part, Col. Francesco Sessa, the Carabinieri Liaison Officer, urged the participants to put the acquired knowledge and skills into practice, and to create innovations for a safer society.

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