Beyond electricity access that is changing life in their area, communities around Rusumo falls will soon start gaining more dividends from the famous hydropower plant.
Rwanda has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Nile Equatorial Lakes Subsidiary Action Program Coordination Unit (NELSAP-CU) on Local Area Development Plan.
The three year project intends to improve the living conditions of Rusumo Fall neighborhoods in Kirehe and Ngoma district.
A portion of this fund will support three main projects in Ngoma district, including; increasing livestock among 15,500 poor households, improving banana production in 8 sectors and supporting small scale irrigation to 1500 hectares.
“Our region is country stock of banana, but varieties we grow today do not help us reach maximum capacity of our land production,” said Aphrodis Nambaje, the Mayor of Ngoma district.
As for Kirehe district, the project will rehabilitate 30km feeder road in Kigarama and Musaza sectors and Cyagasenyi-Gasarabwayi-Nganda road. Another part of the fund will fund construction of Kigina Health Center.
According to Gerard Muzungu the Mayor of Kirehe district, the project will provide jobs to local communities.
The $5million project is also expected to compensate citizens of the 2 districts affected by the construction of the 80 MW Power Plant that started early in February.
Sofar, in Ngoma 80-100 families were affected by the project.
According to Eng. Elicad Elly Nyabeeya, NELSAP Regional Coordinator, the implementation may take lesser time than expected.
“The MoU is for three years but we will be done in one year and half as long as there are other joint projects that were in progress including the Regional Rusumo Falls Hydroelectric Project,” Nyabeeya said.
LADP involves three countries; Rwanda, Tanzania and Burundi that share the socio- economic benefits of Rusumo falls.