At the age of 62 years, Antoinette Ntaweranaryo, a resident of Nyundo, Rusasa Sector in Gakenke District has used kerosene and firewood as the only source of light. This is, however, no more.
Ntaweranaryo is among 100 households that Rwanda National Police (RNP) has connected with solar home system in Nyundo Village.
“Our President gave us hope, and a reason to work hard. When he gave us Gir’inka (one cow per poor family), medical insurance, VUP, clean water and roads, he was telling us to work hard for more. But that didn’t stop him because today, he has given me solar energy and saved me from 64 years of candles,” said a joyful Ntaweranaryo.
Equally, Godeliva Nyirampotore, also a beneficiary from Ruhehe Village, Cyanya Cell in Cyuve Sector, Musanze District couldn’t hide her joy.
“My children will no more hustle with candles and the fear of its side effects like burning the house and inhaling its hazardous smoke. I thank God for delivering us and giving us good leadership that understands and responds to the needs of the people,” said Nyirampotore.
Nyirampotore is also among 151 other households that were connected with solar energy in Ruhehe in Musanze District.
While inaugurating the solar systems in Musanze, yesterday, prior to presiding over the similar event in Gakenke, the Minister of Local Government, Francis Kaboneka called for improved hygiene and fighting drug abuse.
He also warned against early marriages which are said to be still common in Musanze and urged parents to send children to school and sustain the solar energy to serve the purpose including improved performance of their children in school and security.
As part of the Police Week 2017 community development activities and anti-crime awareness, RNP also constructed 400 toilets and paid insurance premiums for 400 residents in Musanze.
While addressing thousands of residents in Nyundo Village later in the day, Minister Kaboneka also called for collective approach against gender based violence.
“Gender based violence is not a Rwandan culture and undermines the Rwandan values. It is demeaning to humanity and hinders general development,” the Minister said.
The Inspector General of Police (IGP) Emmanuel K. Gasana, while speaking in Gakenke, also urged beneficiaries of the solar to protect and use them in development activities.
“Where there is light there shouldn’t be crimes. The Police Week is the time to reflect on your contribution to security in the general development agenda,” IGP Gasana said.
“This is a time to renew our commitment to serving the community and even better while also counting on the community’s collaboration,” he added.
The event was also attended by the Governor of Northern Province, Jean Claude Musabyimana and district mayors, among others.
In Gakenke, Police also rehabilitated 14 bridges that connect different sectors, and constructed two kraals for the vulnerable Gir’inka beneficiaries.
Similar activities were also held in Ruhango and Rulindo districts where 200 households were connected with solar energy as well as offices of Rwesero cell, Kabagali sector in Ruhango.