The Rwanda Transport Development Agency (RTDA) and districts have received eight pickup trucks worth Rwf253 million to boost the rehabilitation, upgrading and maintenance of selected feeder roads across the country.
The vehicles from the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources is part of the $49 million (about Rwf38 billion) World Bank funding to the ministry to support rehabilitation of feeder roads in the country.
Under the project, 93km of feeder roads will be repaired in Rwamagana District, 71km in Gisagara District in Southern Province, as well as 75km in Karongi and 52km in Nyamasheke District in Western Province, according the RTDA officials.
Innocent Musabyimana, the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources permanent secretary, said the project is designed to help ease access to markets by farmers and also reduce the cost of transport.
Speaking at the handover ceremony in Kigali on Thursday, Musabyimana urged RTDA to expedite the works so that farmers can start benefitting from the project.
The vehicles were donated under the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources Feeder Roads Development Project (FRDP) that seeks to improve roads in selected areas across the country to boost agriculture marketing and household incomes, he added. The initial phase of the project will enhance access to agriculture markets and vital services in the districts of Karongi, Nyamasheke, Rwamagana and Gisagara.
Henry Kakooza, the Rwamagana District executive secretary, said improved access to markets will boost farmer morale, making them more productive and competitive.
“This opens up commercial opportunities and services that will make farming more profitable for the masses in the rural areas...It will also help address the challenge of food insecurity,” Kakooza said. He added that rehabilitation of feeder roads will have a multiplier effect, especially creating jobs, reducing poverty as well as increasing household incomes.
Meanwhile, government plans to upgrade and maintain feeder roads in Nyagatare and Gatsibo Districts in Eastern Province, Nyabihu, Rutsiro in Western Province and Nyaruguru District in the Southern Province. This is part of the overall programme to repair, upgrade and maintain feeder roads across the country to increase access to market facilities.