GASABO – In an escalation of the row between Gasabo district authorities and Kigali Golf Club the district yesterday forcefully dismantled the club’s fence which it says is illegal.
The district on Monday morning employed private manpower to cut down the fence that is made up of a local plant known as ‘imiyenzi’ ( Euphorbia tirucalii or milk bush) that surrounds the 52-hectare facility located in Nyarutarama, without giving the Kigali Golf Club officials’ notice, four days ahead of the agreed upon deadline.
In a letter dated September 3, signed by the district mayor, Claudine Nyinawagaga to the club’s management and seen by The New Times, an ultimatum of 15 days was given for the fence to be pulled down.
The club responded in a letter dated September 8, requesting for more time stating that there would be a negative impact in bringing down the fence before erecting a new one.
The letter was also copied to the Minister of Local government and the City Mayor Dr Aisa Kirabo Kakira.
Among the risks stated were the safety of area residents, people and cars passing by as they risked being hit by the golf balls.
“But we were surprised to find the fence pulled down even before they could respond to our letter,” Davis Kashaka, the golf club secretary said yesterday.
“We were not against their demands, but they would have also reconsidered our demands which are even clear, especially since they include risks.”
This comes amidst the clubs preparation for this year’s Rwanda Open tournament that starts on November 6th which will bring together close to 150 professional and amateur golfers both locally, regional and internationally.
When contacted yesterday, Nyinawagaga said that orders to get rid of imiyenzi fences in Kigali City were issued last year.
“The club was aware since then, and the fact that they did not attach any concern on the issue prompted us to act” Nyinawagaga said. She considered the clubs’ request to be given more time as ‘unconvincing’.
“If they had planted that new fence they are talking of last year, by now it would have grown. But they decided to ignore the directive, always claiming that they have a special budget for it.”
The golf club is located in Nyarutarama, an upscale residential area in Kigali City.