The New Times (Kigali)

13 February 2013

Rwanda: PM Wants Huye Development Expedited

PRIME MINISTER Pierre Damien Habumuremyi has challenged Huye leaders to put to use available resources and opportunities to maintain its position as the country's second largest city.

He was speaking on Tuesday during a meeting with local leaders, representatives of cooperatives and members of the private sector including bankers.

While recognising the "significant achievements registered over the past few years," the Prime Minister said a lot still needs to be done.

He reminded the leaders that Huye used to be considered as the second city after the capital Kigali but hastened to add that they might soon lose that status if nothing is done to speed up the development of the district.

"Other cities across the country are developing at a very remarkable speed than your", Habumuremyi stated.

He singled out Muhanga (South), Musanze (North), Rusizi and Rubavu (West) as some upcountry towns which are growing at a high speed.

"I wonder why Huye is lagging behind despite it's a big potential. It should not be where it is today. It should be just close to Kigali City [in terms of development and investment]," he said. "This means you need to work hard and strengthen the partnership between the private and public sector. It is a challenge you have to deal with."

Role of natives

He challenged local business operators, investors and natives of the area to contribute to the district's development.

Habumuremyi also regretted the fact that some 'wealthy' natives of the area have taken their money elsewhere and failed to invest back in the district.

"Instead of investing home, you are running away," he said.

Senator Marie Claire Mukasine, the representative of Huye natives living in Kigali, said they are still discussing ways of contributing to the development of the district.

"We are yet to agree on what to do and how to do it but we are in the process", Mukasine told The New Times shortly after the meeting.

At the meeting, one local investor promised to set up a four-star hotel in the town before the end of next year, while two others pledged to build factories.

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