Premier lays out three year gov’t development plan
The Rwandan government has set out yet another ambitious development plan that is set to be achieved within a period of three years, ahead of the expiration of President Paul Kagame’s second term in office as president.
Recently, the President made an overhauling cabinet reshuffle which saw many ministers dropped from government.
The Newly appointed Premier Anastase Murekezi, while presenting the country’s development program to both houses of parliament, on Monday said that the country’s leadership is determined to meet its development goals and improve the lives of Rwandans.
On governance, the premier said that priority will be put on promoting unity and reconciliation among Rwandans, nationalism, transparent leadership and the emphasis on Rwandan dignity and self-reliance.
Government targets 80 percent of Rwandans to have access to banking services and access to loans will be increased from 15.6 percent to 20.2 percent, with a government pushing for easy access to loans for citizens to implement income generating projects (in agriculture and livestock) that will contribute to the GDP and poverty reduction.
Settling citizens in village settlements will see a rise from the current 51, 6 percent to 70 percent and a 30 percent target for urban settlement by 2017. On this the premier said that the government will focus on proper and planned settlement plans with a focus on affordable housing structures that accommodate more citizens.
On justice, the Government will focus on transparency and accountability in the management of public funds, but embezzled funds will have to be strictly followed up with culprits brought to justice and public funds recovered subsequently.
The government also plans on giving capacity to local justice systems like Houses of Justice (MAJ) to reduce cases and conflicts by 20 percent.
In the same area, the Premier said that focus on eliminating gender based violence, and finalizing all genocide cases in and out of Rwanda- especially having all suspects at large brought to book and all ICTR cases tried on time, or extradited to Rwanda for trial.
Key social welfare focal points will be in increase health access and 100 percent hygiene practices countrywide, and in a bid to provide electricity for all citizens, the supply will increase from 119 MW to 563MW & access to clean water will be 100 percent from 45 percent today.
Interconnection lines will be built & access to electricity will rise from 21percent up to 70percent.
In agriculture, the Premier said that the there is need to increase post-harvest action and working with agricultural cooperatives at a target of 30 percent, but also access to agricultural products through the established East African stock exchange and access to agricultural loans from 4percent to 18percent.
Key infrastructure projects, among many that will propel development included constructing and rehabilitation major road networks countrywide, providing full infrastructure capacity at the Kigali Special Economic zone (KSEZ), developing an industrial master plan and reinforcing stock markets.
Others include speeding up the northern corridor projects especially the regional rail line, ICT cross border connectivity, Comesa airspace management center, research on the petroleum products in the country and capacity building for major factories-(such as Nyamaseke tea factory, Kinazi maize flour, Cimerwa) and building a meat processing plant.
Teachers will also have something to anticipate as government says that 95 percent of the teachers will be provided with capacity and skills plus facilitation through the incentives program in education sector.
The Premier said that the promotion of inclusive, special needs education programs will be paramount as the country also pushes for research based practices in education, agriculture and environmental protection.
Murekezi said that use of ICT will be a major target with more laptops per child, upgraded laboratories, and a use of 50 percent e-learning programs in both secondary schools and universities.
This will also see the implementation of the national data center, and the techno-pole command center and development of soft and hardware industry.
In order to achieve all these goals, the premier called for a collective and collaborative effort from all organizations and partners in development but emphasized that rooting these goals from the family tree, will be the essential step in attaining all the targets.
He said that the family and Rwandan cultural values should be the basis of development and the progress of these targets will be consistently evaluated every year to assess the impact on the Rwandan community.
In this ambitious plan, the government also has its eyes on improving investment climate to come among the top three African countries in doing business and among the 30 top global players in attracting business initiatives and increase the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) from 2 percent to 4.5percent in three years.
The premier said that each major town and districts in the country must have a development master plan and also develop a tourism master plan with focus on historical and cultural tourism attractions and improved environmental protection for parks and other tourist attractions.