The city of Kigali (the capital of Rwanda) has unveiled a five year Development plan, which, according to the Mayor of Kigali city Fidele Ndayisaba, could attract more investors and harmonize the Kigali citizens’ welfare.
The plan includes several aspects in different areas and it is said to be leaving only 20percent of the population under the line of poverty in five years.
The Kigali city development plan is a part of the Government programme, which is implemented around the four pillars; good governance, justice, economic development and social wellbeing. The plan was set according to some agreements made in recent national dialogues led by the President Paul Kagame.
As a member of UN and as a country looking for a better life for its population, Rwanda has made tremendous strides in trying to achieve all the nine Millennium Development Goals. The Kigali city development plan takes note of the milestones achieved, consolidate and build on the gains through elaborate strategies.
The City’s direct role in achieving the MDGs is reflected in the oversight role it has over the 3 districts (Gasabo, Kicukiro and Nyarugenge). In real estate development, different parts of the three districts that compose the city will be affected and construction works have already commenced in some areas.
Places to be developed include the Special Economic Zones, Industrial area; all selected according to the city needs in terms of long term economic development and citizens’ wellbeing.
Challenges and measures
According to the 2010 living conditions inquiry report, 24percent of the City population takes less than 20 minutes to get to a stage for public transport. This indicates that the road network and public transport are two issues that have to be addressed in the City of Kigali.
The same Report shows that over 70percent of the City commuters either walk long distances or use motorbikes to access public transport. This scenario translates to not only high transport costs but also high transit time from one point of town to the other.
Time and cost and inhibit efficiency increases cost of living in the City with a direct effect on urban poverty. The Mayor of Kigali has promised the solution; “Drastic measures to build new, rehabilitate and expand the existing roads network have been contemplated in this development plan in the next five years.” Said Fidele Ndayisaba.
Because of the rapid development of City of Kigali, there has been a massive increase in the number of motor vehicles plying within and out of Kigali. This has created serious strain on the transport infrastructure. Increase of population from less than one million in 2007 to over 1.2 million in 2012 has also exerted a lot of pressure on other infrastructural facilities like energy, water and sanitation.
As indicated by the living conditions inquiry report of 2010, 8.2percent of the city population use flashing toilets. This situation is said to be caused by the long lack of centralized sewerage system and prevalence of unplanned housing development in the City among other factors. All those challenges will be addressed within five years.
It seems the Kigali city authorities noted the President Paul Kagame’s concern, who once said “Let’s identify our problems and make efforts ourselves to solve them now”.
The whole plan activities will tackle the issues of transport, water and Sanitation, urbanization & Housing, Environment, Natural Resources, social Protection, health, ICT and Education among others and will cost around US$ 2.5 bn.
The plan provides an opportunity for both internal and external investors who would like to concentrate on such fields.