KARONGI- Farmers in the western region yesterday raised a number of concerns regarding the law which governs the use and conservation of land in Rwanda.
During a consultative meeting with local leaders in Karongi District, the farmers argued that the law needs to be revised because some articles are still confusing.
Francois Hakuzimana, a member of a farmers’ association (Imbaraga) admitted that farmers perceive a few articles of the law as obstacles.
“Most farmers are still oblivious to the simple guidelines regarding expropriation and modern housing for human settlements. There is need for more awareness,” Hakuzimana observed.
He cited examples where wrangles have come up as a result of misinterpretation of the law.
They include Rusizi expropriations from wetlands to enable growth of rice in Rutsiro District, as per the land consolidation program. Another matter of controversy, according to the farmers’ representatives, was the displacement of people formerly settled in Gishwati Forest.
Juvenal Musine, the Executive Secretary of the farmers’ association cautioned the public against considering the law as a barrier but rather as an effective guideline towards proper land management.
“The country’s economy mainly relies on land either through agriculture or animal husbandry. Its proper management will lead to sustainable development,” Musine noted.