KIGALI - The newly established ministry of Cabinet Affairs will ease and speed up the operations of the Cabinet, Prime Minister Bernard Makuza, who on Friday retained his job, has said.
He was addressing journalists on Friday hours before he released President Paul Kagame’s reshuffle announcement, which saw seven ministers dropped, three promoted and five new faces brought on board.
“It aims at simplifying work and improving the modes of performance of the cabinet process,” Makuza said of the new portfolio, which is now in the hands of Dr Charles Murigande, who has been at replaced by his former junior, Rosemary Museminari, at the Foreign Affairs ministerial post.
Museminari has been the state minister for cooperation, a portfolio that has since been scrapped together with four others.
Makuza said the Cabinet Affairs ministry would have the same structures like other cabinet ministries.
He had called journalists to talk about the recommendations of the recent annual Government retreat at Akagera Game Lodge in the Eastern Province.
Makuza explained that the decision to set up the new ministry was agreed upon during the retreat.
The establishment of the ministry is one of the proposals brought forward by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who earlier this year volunteered to serve as President Kagame’s advisor.
The move, officials say, will help minimize the time the cabinet has been taking discussing policy documents because the ministry will now be doing most of the paper work, before presenting a policy to cabinet.
The premier said that the move would help in speeding up various cabinet activities and improving service delivery.
Meanwhile, Makuza explained that during the retreat it was agreed that all government institutions intensify measures of fighting corruption.
This would save the taxpayers money that would have been misappropriated, he explained.
He said that zero tolerance on all forms of corruption was emphasized and any government official found to be corrupt would be dealt with accordingly.
Other items that were discussed at length were issues regarding promoting social welfare of the population through improving their health standards under Mituelle de Santé, a public health insurance scheme.
Environment protection mechanisms, justice sector empowerment, good governance and promotion of the private sector were also discussed.
The government would empower the private sector through giving affordable loans to private individuals with the aim of creating employment for the people, the premier said.
Other sectors that the government would put more emphasis on are tourism and mining to increase revenue collection from the two sectors.
Makuza also said that the agriculture sector would be improved to benefit majority of Rwandans.
He also stressed the need for the success of Vision 2020 Umurenge development objectives.