Mayors promise ICT-for-all in ‘08

All Rwandans at the cell level could have access to ICT facilities by the end of next year if plans presented by district mayors yesterday are implemented. A cell is the second lowest administrative level. While presenting their development plans, most mayors promised President Paul Kagame that by the end of next year, Information Communication and Technology (ICT) facilities would have been extended to  the cell level.
President Kagame waves to Itorero trainers drawn from around the country at Amahoro National Stadium in Kigali yesterday. (Photo / G. Barya)
President Kagame waves to Itorero trainers drawn from around the country at Amahoro National Stadium in Kigali yesterday. (Photo / G. Barya)

All Rwandans at the cell level could have access to ICT facilities by the end of next year if plans presented by district mayors yesterday are implemented.

A cell is the second lowest administrative level.
While presenting their development plans, most mayors promised President Paul Kagame that by the end of next year, Information Communication and Technology (ICT) facilities would have been extended to  the cell level.

The mayors pledged to extend to grassroots such ICT facilities as computers and their accessories, internet in offices, mobile phones and telecentres.

They thereafter signed performance contracts (Imihigo) committing themselves to the plan, and other development programmes.

Kagame presided over the session during which mayors of all the 30 districts in the country presented their achievements in 2007 and the plans of action for next year for their respective districts.

The session was one of the activities on the second day of the national dialogue conference which ended yesterday at the Parliamentary Buildings, Kimihurura.

All the programmes rotate around the four major pillars of national development agenda.

The pillars are good governance, justice, economic development and social welfare.

Some of the vows that were made and achieved this year include infrastructural development at grassroots level including ICT.

Other areas included security, access to communal health insurance scheme (Mituelle de Sante), fighting the genocide ideology and provision of clean water to communities.

The mayors also promised to have all their citizens in Mituelle by the end of next year.

Kagame dismissed critics who have been alleging that the government only concentrates on developing Kigali City and neglect the rural areas.

He said: “What we have just witnessed proves wrong those people who have been saying that our government’s emphasis is only on developing the city…these mayors are not from Kigali.”

The President reiterated that no other person should impose on Rwandans what they should do to develop themselves.

“They don’t love us more than we love ourselves; it is us who should identify our priorities but not them choosing what is better for the welfare of Rwandans,” he said.

An evaluation was carried out by a commission appointed by government to ascertain whether the mayors indeed did what they claim they achieved.

“Two districts were chosen from each province and in Kigali City for evaluation and it was found out that they had indeed accomplished what they told us,” Prime Minister Bernard Makuza said.

He said that the same commission ranked them according to how they excelled. Nyagatare and Musanze districts were the best achievers.

Kagame urged the various leaders who attended the meeting to take the country into a new chapter while embracing the Rwandan culture.

Performance contracts (Imihigo) which had been used to evaluate ancient chiefs during the pre-colonial era were re-introduced two years ago.

The national dialogue conference, which attracted 940 participants, recommended that the Ministry of Education revises the academic calendar to harmonise it with the East African system.

The fifth annual conference was merged with the bi-annual Diaspora meeting and among the participants were 120 Rwandans who came from abroad.  

The conference was capped by the presentation of 24,000 trainers under the newly introduced cultural schools, Itorero ry’Igihugu to President Kagame.

This particular event was held at Amahoro National Stadium in Remera.

The trainers, who have been undergoing training for the last one month, will also help sensitise the masses about the implementation of Imihigo.

Ends

 

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