VIDEO: Kagame inaugurates Gahanga Cricket oval, urges focus on development

President Paul Kagame yesterday officiated at the opening ceremony of Gahanga Cricket Stadium, which was launched in the afternoon following the monthly community service (Umuganda).
President Kagame with Alby Shale - Project Director of Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation (RSCF) at the official opening of the Gahanga Cricket Stadium. / Courtesy
President Kagame with Alby Shale - Project Director of Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation (RSCF) at the official opening of the Gahanga Cricket Stadium. / Courtesy

President Paul Kagame yesterday officiated at the opening ceremony of Gahanga Cricket Stadium, which was launched in the afternoon following the monthly community service (Umuganda).

Joining residents of Karembure in Kicukiro District’s Gahanga Sector, the President urged them to always work together to achieve needed development for themselves and the country in general.

“Let’s keep up the spirit of working together and for ourselves to achieve our own development. Nothing can stop us from achieving the development we need,” he said.

The residents, joined by President Kagame and other top dignitaries in the country as well as guests from different countries who were in the area to launch the cricket stadium, took part in activities related to the construction site of a new secondary school called Groupe Scolaire Karembure.

The mayor of Kicukiro District, Dr Jeanne Nyirahabimana, thanked the President for joining them at Umuganda, explaining that his launch of the school’s construction will help fast-track activities on the project.

Launching the Gahanga Cricket Stadium, Kagame thanked those who made the project possible and said that Rwanda was happy with the milestone.

The launch was attended by different dignitaries at the event who included Andrew Mitchell, Alby Shale, the current Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation (RSCF) Project Director and a son to the late Christopher Shale, who began working on the idea of building a cricket stadium in Rwanda but passed away before he saw its completion.

Shale’s son took over the project and saw it through its finishing point, thanks to charitable donations from Cricket enthusiasts worldwide.

On top of hosting local games, the stadium, which was built at a cost of nearly Rwf 1billion, will also host international matches, its managers said.

Julienne Uwacu, the Minister for Sports and Culture told delegates at the launch of the stadium yesterday that the facility is the right kind of infrastructure needed to boost sports development in the country.

“Rwandans will use and enjoy it. No sports development is possible without sports infrastructure. The stadium will help nurture a future cricket generation,” she said.

According to the Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation general manager, Eric Dusingizimana, the stadium has a height of 124 meters high, and the width of 137 meters, with a modern grass pitch of ‘Bermuda Grass’, which is commonly used in modern cricket stadiums.

The completed part of the stadium was built on a two-hectare area, and the cricket foundation remains with 2.5 hectares of the land allocated to it in Gahanga, which will be used in the future.

Construction works on the modern facility started in April 2015 after the Rwanda Cricket Stadium Foundation received a lease certificate for a 4.5-hectare plot in Gahanga Sector, in Kigali City’s Kicukiro District.

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