July 19, 2024


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Environment Minister calls to the concerned Districts to revive Sebeya Catchment

Rwanda's Minister of Environment Dr. Vicent Biruta

Rwanda’s Minister of Environment Dr. Vicent Biruta has urged concerned Districts to take the ownership of Landscape Restoration and Integrated Water Resources Management in Sebeya and other catchments.

The Minister made the call on Wednesday Evening during a meeting with Western province officials held a day before the launch of a Rwf 22 billion project whose objective is to restore degraded lands in Sebeya and other catchments through agroforestry, afforestation, gullies rehabilitation and river bank protection among many other interventions.

The Projected which will be implemented by the International Union of Conservation Network (IUCN), SNV and Action for the Protection of the Environment and Promotion of Agriculture sector (APEFE) is financed by the Netherlands Embassy in Rwanda through the Environment Ministry’s Rwanda Water and Forestry Authority.

Minister Biruta urged Mayors of the four districts where the project will be implemented to take a leading role and the ownership to ensure its smooth implementation as well as attain the expected results.

The project will cover the districts of Rubavu, Rutsiro, Ngororero and Nyabihu.

Rubavu District Mayor Habyalimana Gilbert at a community Work in Kanama where the project was launched on Thursday 20th June 2019

Apart from the call addressed to the districts Mayors, Minister Biruta also added request the beneficiaries be part of the project noting that ” The way the project is designed, there is window to adjust where it will be necessitated to adjust so the project meets citizens expectations.”

Minister Biruta was speaking at the official launch of the project in Kanama sector of Rubavu District on Thursday.

The flooding of River Sebeya last year caused devastating effects leading to the loss of human lives, destruction of infrastructures and farmers plantations among many others.

Rwanda’s Armed Forces are known for their tireless contribution to the Environment protection

Rubavu District Mayor Habyarimana Gilbert said “Despite those challenges the Government and partners intervened and a lot has been done,” however, he added “We are committed to invest more efforts in addressing the causes and we are sure that in coming years Sebeya river will no longer cause problems rather it will come solution to our community.”

In a comment, Archbishop of Nyundo Diocese, Mwumvaneza Anaclet said “Once we join efforts, I am sure Sebeya River would come as clean as other rivers that we see in cities such as Paris, Roma and elsewhere.”

Mwumvaneza also proposes that the issue of removing deposits of sedments in the river should also be taken into consideration.

Being implemented in the participatory approach, community will also have views on what they think is suitable for them to benefit economically from the activities that will be done.

Apart from employments, some families also will be given cows, others get paid for the ecosystem services.

Frederique de Man, Ambassador of the Netherlands, a country that injects funding in Rwanda’s Water Management through the Integrated Water Resources Management Approach said that Netherlands is aware of all the effects of climate change on Rwanda’s rivers and her population and for this reason, she said, “The Netherlands support Rwanda’s Landscape Restoration because Rwanda deserves our country’s support.”

Ambassador Frederique de Man

“Let us keep up this feeling of working together so none of us will be affected by the effect of climate change” she added

The ‘Landscape Restoration and Integrated Water Resources Management in Sebeya and other Catchments’ project’ will build on experience and lessons from Water for Growth, Rwanda-Netherlands partnership program which ended in April 2019

As an Implementing partner, the IUCN Regional Director for the Eastern and Southern Africa Region Office Luther B. Anukur added that “IUCN will have to partner with local Government Institutions throughout the implementation and also communities will play a very big part, but we will also be working with other partners with different competencies for example some will help us to set up mechanisms and others will help us for technical studies just to make sure that we attain the project expected Results.”

Citizens Urged to play an active role in the conservation erfforts


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