Send illicit brew distillers to TVET centres, not jail

Editor,Please allow me to respond to the article, “Police arrest nine illicit brew distillers in Rwamagana”, published in The New Times of October 7.

Editor,

Please allow me to respond to the article, “Police arrest nine illicit brew distillers in Rwamagana”, published in The New Times of October 7.

I am always appalled every time I read that some Rwandans have been put behind bars because they were involved with making something we call “illegal”. I think we are lucky to have those people who are actually turning into reality what we need the country to become – to be self-sufficient in almost everything.

These people have taken the first steps towards our collective dream as a nation. At the moment, we are importing practically everything, including cure-dents (toothpicks) and needles. Why don’t we rather send such guys to our vocational training centres of or better still to other countries to upgrade their skills.

That way they will acquire skills that enable them to produce distilled brews that are scientifically approved.

A government-sponsored trip to Kenya’s East African Breweries Ltd can bring something magical that we have never expected. These guys would not only create jobs for themselves and their compatriots but would also pass on these skills to the next generation.

It’s about time we stopped behaving like a technician who thinks that a computer has to be formatted whenever it has a problem. There’s always another way you can make it work without formatting it. Who doesn’t want the “Made in Rwanda” label?

Mutara Intore, Kigali

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