27 January 2013

Rwanda: Construction of Model Prison Set to Begin

Negotiations to start the construction of a model prison in Butamwa, Mageregere Sector of Gasabo District in Kigali, have been finalized.

This new prison will have the capacity to accommodate between 7,500 and 10,000 inmates.

Officials from Rwanda Correctional Services (RCS) say that all requirements are in place and that engineers are in their final stages kick-starting the project.

Speaking to Sunday Times, Dativa Mukanyangezi, the Commissioner in charge of social correction, human rights and cooperation at RCS, said that the facility will be one of the best correctional centres in the country.

"We considered many factors in making sure that it rhymes with the international standards to avoid violation of rights of inmates," said Mukanyangezi.

Inmates who are in the construction field under the vocational training programme at RCS will take an active role in building the prison. This is also among the measures RCS takes in reducing costs of the project.

The prison is meant to accommodate inmates currently at Nyarugenge commonly known as '1930', and Kimironko prisons. The two are meant to be relocated to pave way for development in line with the implementation of Kigali Master Plan.

The new site where the modern prison is to be constructed covers 50 hectors and expropriation of residents from the area cost over Rwf 220m. It is estimated that the project will cost Rwf 2bn and that it will be carried out in two phases.

Upon completion of the first phase, inmates at Kimironko prison will immediately be relocated while the second phase will accommodate those in the other prison. Officials say that currently, it is not possible to implement any lengthy programme there due to the relocation expected.

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