Editorial: New City Hall leadership has its work cut out

The City of Kigali on Saturday got new leadership, which will be at the helm of the city in this critical time as they embark on reforms instituted to boost delivery of services.

The new leadership will have an uphill task of ensuring the reforms, which among others saw the legal status of all the three city districts scrapped, are implemented to the latter.

With the scrapping of the legal status of the city districts, the implication is that planning for the entire capital will be done at the City Hall and this will also be charged with allocating resources for the different projects.

This, like officials said during the presentation of the new law outlining the reforms to the parliament, will bring about efficiency to better serve the city residents and also expedite development.

The reforms that the new mayor and his two deputies will kick-start include realigning the staff members of the capital to the new structure, to ensure the reforms deliver expected results.

Fortunately, the new leadership understands well the work they have taken on, and the new mayor stated during his inaugural speech that together with his team, they will strive to streamline city transport and promote green development.

Tens of thousands of city dwellers depend on public transport daily, to commute to and from their respective places of work, and the queues at bus stops in the city, especially during peak hours, can be depressing.

Green development is equally important and this can be tied to the transport problem where a well-articulated plan would, for instance, see to the set-up of bicycle lanes on all city streets which would encourage residents to rely more on bicycles for transport.

Models like the one that was recently announced by an investor – where people will be able to share bicycle rides to get to their destination for a small fee – should be supported.

This will not only solve the issue of public transport and safeguard the environment; it will also help promote healthy lifestyles for Kigalians.

The new leadership should also urgently see to end the issue of lack of a centralized sewerage system in Kigali, among other priorities.

We are equally encouraged by the dynamism seen in the new leadership – both the executive team and the advisory council – which are dominated by youthful technocrats.