The Vision 2020 Umurenge Programme (VUP) will embark on providing employment to people living under the poverty line and are eligible to work.
In an interview with The New Times, Justin Gatsinzi, the National Coordinator of VUP said that the move is aimed at reducing poverty levels in the country by 2012.
VUP is an integrated local development programme to accelerate poverty eradication, rural growth, and social protection.
According to a survey conducted in 2006, 36.9 percent of the total population lived in extreme poverty.
“In an effort to reduce poverty levels in the country to 24 percent by 2012, we have now resolved to begin encouraging people living under poverty line who are able to work to engage in income generating projects,” Gatsinzi said.
“We will boost this through changing mindsets of some people in rural areas towards economic development.”
He said VUP will be implemented in three ways; funding public works that provide employment to members of poor households with no land but can work, and through direct cash transfers to poor households that have no land and cannot work.
According to the programme, the direct cash transfers depend on the members in a family: one gets Rwf7, 500, two get Rwf12, 000 and 5 members or more get Rwf21,000 per month.
The programme coordinator noted that, so far, poverty has reduced to 34.5 percent according to the survey that conducted in 90 sectors which indicated extreme poverty levels.There are 416 sectors in the country.
Alfred Nsengimana, the Executive Secretary of Gicumbi Sector in Musanze District said that his sector has registered tremendous success, with only 280 households live under the poverty level.
In 2007 there were 1,193 families living below the poverty level in this sector.
“Currently almost all households have a cow; this has also led to the reduction of crimes in our sector,” Nsegimana said, adding that owning a cow has increased incomes.Gicumbi is the leading sector in the implementation of the VUP.
In 2009, Government spent over Rwf 12.3 billion in about 60 sectors of the VUP programme to ensure poverty reduction.