Stakeholders meet in bid to rescue City Park

KIGALI - Efforts to allay investors’ financial dilemma that ensued from the long stalled Kigali City Park (KCP) project are underway with encouraging progress being made, officials have said. This is the position currently upheld by some key officials from institutions involved in the project, a few weeks after the recently held Presidential Investors’ Roundtable (PIRT) painted a rather gloomy picture of KCP’s standing. “The matter is advancing well, we are happy with the progress which so far is encouraging,” Emmanuel Hategeka, the Executive Secretary of the Private Sector Federation (PSF), one of the stakeholders, said on phone yesterday.
Dilapidated equipment that was meant to be part of Kigali City Park lie wasteful besides an artificial lake. (File Photo).
Dilapidated equipment that was meant to be part of Kigali City Park lie wasteful besides an artificial lake. (File Photo).

KIGALI - Efforts to allay investors’ financial dilemma that ensued from the long stalled Kigali City Park (KCP) project are underway with encouraging progress being made, officials have said.

This is the position currently upheld by some key officials from institutions involved in the project, a few weeks after the recently held Presidential Investors’ Roundtable (PIRT) painted a rather gloomy picture of KCP’s standing.

“The matter is advancing well, we are happy with the progress which so far is encouraging,” Emmanuel Hategeka, the Executive Secretary of the Private Sector Federation (PSF), one of the stakeholders, said on phone yesterday.

Hategeka could not divulge details of the progress made but explained that soon after the roundtable, a stakeholders’ meeting was held before last month which resulted in some resolutions being made.

These, he maintained were “not yet for public consumption” but are positive resolutions for the way forward for KCP, a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) initiative that was to see the construction of a multi-million dollar recreational centre in the Nyarutarama area of Gasabo District.

It was earlier reported to the Presidential Investors Roundtable that the KCP investment in Nyarutarama valley which started of in June 2003, halted in February 2007. 

Since December 2007, no payment was made to compensate KCP despite earlier PIRT resolutions.

Dubai World, a global investment company, is said to have interrupted investments on the project for another year, citing the present global financial crisis, a move which in turn is creating uncertainties on the next steps as officials acknowledged last year.

The investors’ woes are also compounded by bank interest rates and losses at a rate of one million Rwandan francs per day that have accumulated since 2007, putting local investors in a financial dilemma.

The Central Bank categorized the venture’s private investors – Musoni Ndamage and Eugene Nyagahene – “in class five due to the loans owed” to other banks. This meant that all their other businesses could not receive loans.

Besides, equipment on site depreciated “beyond recovery” and the road infrastructure has not been maintained thus losing value.

In a subsequent phone interview, Francis Gatare, the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) Principal Deputy CEO also confirmed that they indeed met and came out with some proposals on how to move forward, although the initial project appears dead.

“The project as originally conceived has long been off-table,” he said, underlining that what is currently being discussed is how they can work with the investors to find a solution for their financial difficulties.

“The discussions we are having are actually to help them ease the financial difficulties they are having.”

Efforts to contact Nyagahene, who owns Tele 10 a DSTV pay television franchise and one of the local investors, were all futile by press time as he could not answer his telephone.

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