KAYONZA — Government has earmarked Rwf.350 million towards the demarcation of the boundaries of Lake Muhazi, the Minister of State for Minerals and Natural Resources, Vincent Karega, has said. He was speaking to The New Times on Wednesday after carrying out community work on the banks of Lake Muhazi.
The community work attracted employees of the Rwanda Environment Management Authority (REMA), scores of residents and local authorities from districts neighbouring the lake.
Karega said the boundaries will be made on 190 km stretch on the banks of the lake from next month to March 2010.
“We want residents to respect the demarcation of the planned 50 metre radius surrounding the lake as being off bounds for encroachment. We have been working with mayors to define these boundaries; they were all having facilities such as GPS so that they can make proper measures. We have launched a project to protect all the marked boundaries with the necessary measures,” he said.
“We have also been working to prevent soil erosion from polluting the lake. In partnership with the Agriculture Ministry, we plan to plant more fish in the lake,”he added.
Karega said that local authorities have used the occasion to sensitise residents about the importance of environmental conservation.
“This is part of the Environment Week which falls on June 5. We decided to conduct a one week environment campaign in the whole of Rwanda, whereby we started off by working on River Akanyaru on May 30.On that day the Minister of Natural Resources, Stanislas Kamanzi and residents planted bamboo trees and other tree species along the banks of Akanyaru,” he said.
The districts neighbouring Lake Muhazi include Rwamagana, Kayonza, Gicumbi, Gatsibo and a small part of Gasabo.
Rwamagana Mayor, Valens Ntezirembo said that the project will help protect the lake and disclosed that the district will contribute Rwf.34 million towards the project.
“We will be buying equipment and we are ready with our contribution. It will also benefit residents residing along the edges of the lake,” the Mayor said.