NYANZA — The Prime Minister Bernard Makuza on Thursday started a two-day working tour of Nyanza district during which he inspected an irrigation dam project in Gasasa. The project is funded by the government through the Rural Sector Support Project (RSSP).
On the first day of his tour, the Premier visited Kibilizi Sector where he inspected different development activities before addressing a mammoth crowd at the Kibilizi Sector headquarters.
Makuza commended RSSP for the grand project which is expected to improve the livelihood of the local people. The Gasasa project is expected to facilitate the cultivation of over 180 hectares of rice once completed.
According to Geraldine Mukeshimana, the RSSP national coordinator, the project will increase cultivable land from 30 hectares to over 180 once completed.
“Not only shall it increase the amount of cultivable land, but it will also facilitate double cropping in a year. We shall be able to release water into the rice farms during the dry seasons thus facilitating all year round agricultural activities.”
The construction of the water barrier and the entire necessary infrastructure is expected to cost over Frw1billon.
The Premier also visited Nyamagana and Rwesero Villages (Midugudu) housing 104 homesteads of mainly Genocide survivors and other vulnerable groups.
He appreciated efforts by Rwesero residents to better their lives manifested by clear development plans laid out by village authorities.
Prime Minister Makuza donated twenty cows to Rwesero village under the One Cow-One family initiative. He also visited Kabonabona Coffee washing station run by an American; Scott Warren. At the station, Warren briefed the Premier on efforts to ensure quality coffee production in the area.
“We have set up a demonstration farm to practically show farmers what is expected of them as they cultivate their coffee,” said Warren.
“We have insisted on the planting of shade providing plants so as to shield coffee trees from the harsh dry weather conditions.”
At the Kabonabona Coffee station, farmers have been taught how to turn coffee husks into organic manure and water from the washing station into a pesticide.
The Premier later in the day addressed residents of Kibilizi where he implored them to work hard to better their economic situation.
“You should take advantage of the Gasasa irrigation dam project to increase production because with the dam, it will be possible to have two planting seasons in a year,” said the Premier.
Makuza urged residents to increase coffee production by improving on the methods of farming.
“You need to increase the amount of coffee collected on each tree. Research shows that if well catered for, a single coffee tree can produce up to 10 kilograms,” said Makuza.
The Premier called upon Kibilizi residents to guard against genocide ideology, drunkenness and idleness.
The Premier heard complaints from the local people which ranged from land disputes to marital problems.
The Premier was notified of a bizarre case of an 80-year old man who impregnated a 15-year- old girl. He fled the village to evade arrest.
Reacting to the report, the Premier called upon the police and the local authorities to ensure that the culprit is arrested and brought to book.
The Premier continued his tour on Friday (yesterday) with a visit to Nyakizu Sector. He was accompanied by among others; Local Government Minister; Protais Musoni, Agriculture Minister; Christopher Bazivamo, the Minister in the President’s Office, Solina Nyirahabimana, Southern Province Governor, Fidele Ndayisaba, and a host of other senior government officials.