The New Times (Kigali)

17 August 2012

Rwanda: MTN Has Donated Rwf11 Million to the Muslim Community.

Communities are forced to look inward at their own resources and potential in order to carve some form of future for themselves and their children.

One particular community-based local development initiative has been well documented in rural Karera Village, Torero Cell in Ngororero District, where residents, rather than wait for government to connect their neighborhood to the national electricity grid, initiated a micro-hydropower plant to supply the area with power.

It is certain in the above case that where local endeavours do exist, development initiatives tend to be the result of unique combinations of local leadership and resources. Hence, credit goes to an area resident Dermon Kwitonda, 26, for taking time to mobilise people in his area, despite all odds.

Karera community members have so powerfully demonstrated to all and sundry that by coming together with a common purpose, it is possible to break formerly unimaginable barriers. Also prominent is the growth of co-operatives in the country as vindicated by Kwitonda's Abibumbiye hamwe, and their increasingly important role in supplementing government efforts in national development.

This is therefore a lesson to all Rwandans in their respective localities to look inward to their own resources and skill sets by charting the way forward in their own communities.

This should nonetheless mask the reality of the government's role in the survival and success of such initiatives as its involvement is certainly critical. Its development strategies should progressively be pegged on issues of local self-help and community self-reliance.

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