COVID-19: Senators to join drive to support the needy

The Senate has called its members to support vulnerable people in the community get food during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The call was made on Monday, March 30, through video conference where the Bureau examined the role the Senate should play during this time.


The outbreak induced a nationwide lockdown which has resulted in some people temporarily losing jobs as businesses underwent temporary closure or laid off some workers.


The lockdown was intended to prevent the spread of the viral and infectious disease.


“There are people who were casual labourers, or those who received daily wages. But now, all of them are not able to work, which means that they lost the source of their revenues,” Augustin Iyamuremye, Senate President told The New Times.

“But those who are lucky to get monthly salaries – senators inclusive – are reminded to join hands with other Rwandans to support the vulnerable,” he said.

He said people, especially in Kigali, have started mobilising contributions consisting of food to the needy.

It is to be noted that the government started to distribute food among the vulnerable though the national strategic food reserve under the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources.

But the food in that reserve is not enough to feed the needy people accounting for 16 per cent – or around 1.8 million.

Estimates from the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources suggest that the government ensures that there be at6 least 10,000 tonnes of maize and 5,000 tonnes of beans in its national strategic reserve.

In the meantime, the private sector has also joined the drive by providing foodstuffs and hygienic products such as soap to the needy.

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