Editorial: Someone has to pick the tab for losses due to poor planning

Imihigo (performance contracts), one of the homegrown solutions that have been behind the stellar performance by the current government, is in the news once again.

This time it is not how districts fared but why they failed. Now it seems it all comes down to poor planning as one of the causes, a recent report by the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda reveals.

Unlike in the past where not all construction projects needed prior studies, today feasibility studies are compulsory. The problem is that the studies are done poorly by most districts and this is the reason for some of the delayed projects.

One big eyesore is Burera Beach Resort, a hotel in Northern Province. The Rwf500 million hotel was completed in 2016 but up to now it remains unoccupied and might soon be overrun by bushes. That not only indicates that Burera District administration, or their predecessors had serious problems, they went about their work with a laisser faire attitude.

They should have thought of how they will exploit the hotel before laying the foundation stone instead of sitting back and waiting for an investor to come knocking.

Similarly, poor planning led to the delay in the completion of Butaro Hospital when, in the midst of its construction, it was “discovered” that its foundation could not support its weight. They had to bring it down and start all over again.

The issue here is not poor planning as mistakes are bound to happen; the crux of the matter is who picks up the losses? Definitely, as long as there is no accountability similar incidents are likely to crop up again.

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