The Evangelical Restoration Church (ERC) has cried foul over persistent delays for authorization to construct a multi-million dollar church complex in Gasabo district.
The 11-hectare piece of land found in Masoro Gasabo district was acquired in 2007, leading to the expropriation of over 50 families to a tune of Rwf78 million to make way for the construction of the 66 million dollar complex.
The multipurpose complex dubbed “Kigali International Prayer Mountain” (KIPM) expected to be complete in 2015 would include a 20,000 seat cathedral, a clinic, schools, sports ground and a children’s park.
Marcel Kamanzi in-charge of the project said that the construction which was supposed to start last year has not commenced accusing Gasabo district of dragging its feet in the process.
Kamanzi alleged for instance that the district has not evicted some of the expropriated families to give a green light for the construction works.
He identified one resident, Bernadette Nyiramuhanda who has refused to shift with her eviction resting in the hands of the district but not the church.
“We have on many occasions written to Gasabo demanding to know why Nyiramuhanda has not yet vacated the land and why they have not granted us a go ahead but there is no response,” Kamanzi said.
“They demanded us to deposit all the expropriation money on their bank account and we did it.”
“Nyiramuhanda is among those who benefited from this money and we are now spending money renting when actually we would be operating from our premises as originally planned.”
The church, Kamanzi said has since last year spent close to Rwf15m on renting the current premises.
“We have run out of patience though our wish is to resolve the matter peacefully,” Kamanzi said.
When contacted, the Director of Lands in Gasabo district, John Rukabu, said he could not make a comment because the case was before the courts.
“I can not give any comment on that because I hear the case is already before courts of law. That would be pre-empting the case. We are waiting for the court ruling,” Rukabu said.