GASABO - The Minister of Defence General Marcel Gatsinzi yesterday officially commissioned the first ever Frw720 million housing estate for members of the Rwanda Defence Forces.
The opening ceremony took place at Kibagabaga in Gasabo District and attracted several senior military officers.
The estate built by Goboka association in 2005 comprises of 60 homes which were later sold to the Rwanda Housing Bank.
The bank put finishing touches to the houses and leased them out to 60 junior military officers at Frw12 million each, to be paid in a period of between 10 and 15 years.
Gatsinzi said that his ministry had started implementing the government policy of providing decent housing to Rwandans, in close collaboration with the Rwanda Housing Bank.
"We are still faced with large numbers of our staff who need housing facilities. That is why we thought of starting with only 60 soldiers," Gatsinzi said.
He said that the Ministry of Defence had entered into partnership with the City of Kigali, and Gasabo District to build roads in the estate.
"The ministry doesn’t give out loans, but the bank does. We shall continue to make sure that we facilitate the loan repayment process," he said.
Meanwhile, the minister also laid a foundation stone on a piece of land that will be used to construct 50 more houses for soldiers attached to the Air Force.
He however said that the houses would be slightly more expensive than the previous ones due to the increase in prices of building materials.
Gervais Ntaganda, the Director General of Rwanda Housing Bank, reiterated the bank’s commitment to provide loans for building housing estates in the country.
"The Ministry of Defence has showed us that the Government through different ministries can improve on the living conditions of their staff," he said.
He said that once many houses are built in a particular area, it becomes easier to provide facilities like schools, hospitals and water.