KIGALI - Infrastructure Minister Linda Bihire yesterday assured employees of Electrogaz, the national water and energy utility, that they would not lose their jobs as a result of the restructuring the parastatal expected soon.
This comes after it was recently announced that the utility would soon be split into two bodies, one in charge of water supply while the other would be in charge of electricity distribution.
Bihire, who was touring Electrogaz installations in Kigali City, said that the utility is one of the most efficiently run government parastatals.
She told the employees that the restructuring is meant to increase the efficiency of Electrogaz and that they should not worry about losing their jobs.
The corporation currently employs over 1,600 workers. She appealed to the company to increase access to water resources in the country, adding that investors are set to begin a tile factory in Nyagatare instead of installing it in other parts of the country where there are more raw materials for tile manufacture.
“Electricity and water are very crucial to the development programmes…they determine where important projects are set up.”
“Because Nyagatare is close to an important water resource, the investors have decided to start their factory in the area, yet it would have been more meaningful if it has been established in areas like Ruhengeri (Northern Province) where there are more stones needed in the manufacturing of tiles,” said Bihire.
John Mirenge, the Managing Director of Electrogaz and its board chairman Prof. Chrisologue Karangwa, accompanied the minister on a tour around the installations.
Mirenge said that his organization had undergone tremendous growth in the past three years increasing water production by 18 percent and electricity rollout by 10 percent.
He promised that when the Nyabarongo water project is completed in March most of Kigali’s water problems will be solved.
He added that with the completion of several mini Hydro Electric projects currently underway, even access to electricity will significantly increase.
Mirenge said among the medium term electricity plans include a 20 MWproject and the extraction of methane gas in Lake Kivu whose pilot project is already producing five MWs.