Urgent call to curb population growth
The United Nation’s Population Fund (UNFPA) warned against the country`s high rate of population growth.
Rwanda has registered an increase in the population growth rate to 2.8 percent from 2.1 percent last year.
The call was made as the country joined the rest of the world in marking the International Population Day under the theme, “Universal Access to Reproductive Health Services”
UNFPA Country Resident Representative, Victoria Akyeampong, said that the population growth rate is a threat to the country despite the 8 per cent economic growth the country registered last year.
The government was recommended to tackle the problem with a number of measures that also include intensifying reproductive health education to encourage the use of family planning methods.
Literacy campaign gets US$75000 boost
An international organization –Education Development Centre Inc (EDC) bought equipments for a recording audio-visual studio of Rwanda Education Board (REB) to enable it produce programmes that will be used in teaching.
The programmes will be used in primary schools to promote literacy, language and learning English, Kinyarwanda and mathematics.
Being supported by USAID at a cost of Rwf 75,000, the five year project will benefit all public schools countrywide.
It will provide recorded information that will be used or simplify learning for the students as well as teaching.
The head of the organization, Said Yasin, said that his organization will also be charged with the responsibility of providing software and hardware and the technical support.
The programme will be implemented in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and Rwanda Education Board (REB).
Eastern Province marks Coffee Day
Coffee Day was launched in Kirehe district in the Eastern Province. Women coffee growers said that the activity is no longer for men alone like it used to be in the past.
They attributed it to government support in empowering them to engage in coffee farming.
The day was marked in Kirehe as a recognition for the district`s contribution of high quality coffee, according to Corneille Ntakirutimana of the National Agricultural Export Development Board (NAEB).
One of the best farmers in the Province, Theopiste Nyiramahoro, said there used to be harsh gender inequalities in coffee growing as women were not allowed to have access to highly paying crops.
She pointed out that women were considered workers and mothers but not decision makers. She added that they were for having children.
City traders pave way for Rwf60b complex
City traders operating on the parcel of land that houses various businesses including Akagera Motors, SECAM and BENALCO, were given an ultimatum to relocate their businesses.
This is to give way for the construction of a modern complex estimated to cost Rwf60 billion.
Alphonse Nizeyimana, Kigali City vice mayor in charge of Finance and Economic Development, said that the land which is about 3.5 hectares was meant to be developed by construction of modern commercial buildings and hotels.
He said the architectural design of the project is complete. Currently, the land houses about 20 business operators.
The project is owned by five developers of which some are among those operating in the area on the land.
Nizeyimana said this is in line with the implementation of the city master plan, especially in the central business district adding that traders in the area have been given a 10 month notice.
Kagame receives forest policy award
President Paul Kagame received the “Future Policy Award” that was given to the forest policy by World Future Council—an international policy research organization.
This was during the first Inter-Parliamentary forum in Kigali on “Forests for People” that attracted representatives from Burundi, Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, South Africa and Zambia.
Alexandra Wandel, the director of the organization handed over the award to the President
The award celebrates the world’s most exemplary national policies that create better living conditions for current and future generations, besides producing practical and tangible results.
The event brought together 23 Parliamentarians, forestry policymakers and experts among others.
Huye traders decry power tariffs
Business operators in Huye district said they have been affected by the recent increase in electricity tariffs.
Traders who use electricity have resorted to increasing prices of their commodities and services, to do away with the effect.
The New Times established that among others, Flour mills, increased the grinding cost per kilogramme from Rwf 10 to Rwf 15.
A kilogram of Soya beans is now being grinded at Rwf 30 from 20 while maize now costs Rwf 60 up from Rwf 40.
Some barbershop said that the tariff rise too affected their businesses.
From last week, the state-run Energy, Water and Sanitation Authority (EWSA) hiked electricity tariffs by 20 percent, citing the need for the utility to be a self-sustaining entity.
EWSA said as a result of the increase, government subsidies would now drop from Rwf 24 billion to Rwf 17.9 billion per annum.
Western Province highway gets $166m China funding
The Rusizi-Rubavu highway project will be boosted by the Government of the People’s Republic of China with a fund worth US116 million.
The 66 kilometer highway through Karongi district is expected to promote tourism and trade.
John Rwangombwa, Minister of Finance said the fund is a soft loan to be paid in 20 years with a 1.5 interest rate per cent. He observed that China is a great partner in development.
He said the Kivu Belt was a rich region in terms of agriculture and tourism, thus the construction of the road will significantly boost the economy.
Rwangombwa said that the Kivu Belt road construction started in 2010, with funding from the African Development Bank and the Arab Development Bank (BADEA).
He said government has mobilised all the required funds, with the works estimated to take three to four years.