World Bank Rwanda has a new Country Manager, Sahr Kpundeh replacing Rolande Pryce who served in the same position since September 2020. In a statement issues by the Bank, Kpundeh will lead the World Bank's engagement in Rwanda, which includes an active lending portfolio, a vibrant knowledge partnership, and a dynamic dialogue with the Government of Rwanda and a wide range of stakeholders. ALSO READ: Kagame, World Bank official discuss Rwanda’s electrification drive Kpundeh, a US national originally from Sierra Leone, has been working with the Bank since 2002, as a Senior Public Sector Management Specialist at the World Bank Institute. He has held various positions, including as Advisor in the World Bank's Governance Global Practice and as Country Manager in South Sudan. His most recent assignment was Country Manager for Zambia. “In his new position, Kpundeh's priorities will be to deliver on the World Bank's Rwanda Country Partnership Framework (2021-2026); support the implementation of the World Bank's Evolution Roadmap and innovate its use of financial instruments, working closely with the International Finance Corporation and Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, both part of the World Bank,” reads the bank’s statement. ALSO READ: Rwanda, World Bank ink $129m education deal It also adds that Kpundeh will ensure relationships with Rwanda are active across all the agencies; and lead a strong, well-functioning country team to deliver results on behalf of our client. Some of the key projects and programs funded by the World Bank Group (WBG) include the Rwanda Quality Basic Education for Human Capital Development Project ($338 million); the Transformation of Agriculture Sector Project ($300 million); the Priority Skills for Growth Project ($270 million); the Rwanda Housing Finance Project; ($150 million); and the Second Rwanda Urban Development Project ($168 million). The Bank has sustained its support to Rwanda for social protection for over a decade now. Through the Social Protection System Project, it has helped build the foundation of a strong social protection system in Rwanda, particularly by supporting the initiation and expansion of the Vision 2020 Umurenge Program (VUP), the government’s flagship social protection program. Different components of the VUP benefit more than 1.58 million individuals in targeted households, with the following examples: ALSO READ: World Bank to avail $175m for Rwanda’s human capital development programme Data from the World Bank indicates that through the bank’s financed Rwanda Quality Basic Education for Human Capital Development Project (QBEP) Rwanda registered remarkable improvements in access to schools, along with improved teaching and learning conditions. The project has funded construction activities, including 2,965 classrooms in new schools to deal with overcrowding and long travel distances, 8,039 additional classrooms in pre-existing schools to reduce overcrowding, and 14,680 gender-segregated latrines. According to the bank, this has led to a 31 per cent increase in primary classrooms with a 17-percentage point increase (from 74% pre-QBEP to 91%) in classroom allocative efficiency. The construction programs (including one government-financed) have led to a 33% decrease in student to classroom ratios at primary level, from 73.1% in 2019 to 49.1% in 2021. The World Bank, through the Rwanda Feeder Roads Development Project (FRDP), is helping the Government of Rwanda create all-season road connectivity to agricultural market centers in 10 districts of the country. With about 545km of feeder road rehabilitation completed out of a project target of 720km, the project’s achievements are already impacting farmers’ lives.