Rwanda National Police (RNP), on Saturday, handed over houses it constructed for selected disadvantaged families in different parts of the country.
One fully equipped three-bedroom house was constructed in each of the 30 districts of the country. Each house has a modern kitchen and is connected with solar energy. The handover was conducted simultaneously across the country.
The inauguration of the houses also climaxed the 2019 Police Month held under the theme: "19 years of partnership in policing towards sustainable safety and better livelihood for communities."
In Gicumbi District, the handover of the house presided over by the Minister of Justice and Attorney General, Johnston Busingye coincided with the inauguration of two Police stations; in Kaniga and Cyumba sectors.
The Minister of Justice and Attorney General, Johnston Busingye addresses residents of Cyumba in Gicumbi District. / Courtesy
The stations also include the mess and separate accommodation wings for male and female officers.
While addressing thousands of residents in Cyumba, Minister Busingye thanked RNP for going beyond its usual physical security of the people to improve their livelihoods.
"The last 19 years of RNP dedicated and quality services to the people have not been in vain, we have a safer and secure country, and this is because of the strong partnership with the people and other government and private institutions," Busingye said.
This partnership between all entities and the people, he said, is a leadership policy to join efforts in uplifting the quality of life for Rwandans.
He added that security is the foundation and pillar for sustainable development and wellbeing of the people.
Busingye urged Gicumbi residents to feel the responsibility of sustaining what has been achieved by reporting wrongdoers like drug dealers.
The Minister also warned of severe legal repercussions, especially for drug dealers, which now has a sentence of up to life in prison.
"This partnership is the reason as to why people in Rwanda are safe... why Rwanda stands out as one of the safest countries in the region and world-over."
He told the residents to work with Police officers at their new stations and support security efforts by reporting people they suspect to be engaged in criminal acts.
The Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Dan Munyuza commended the role of the citizenry, government and private entities, and other security organs for the strong partnership, particularly during the Police Month.
"During this Police Month, RNP also constructed six village offices, lit 3000 households with solar energy (100 households in every district), covered medical insurance premiums (Mutuelle de Sante) for 3000 vulnerable people and more than 1000 Police officers donated blood," IGP Munyuza said.
Other outreach activities conducted during the Police Month include raising awareness against high impact crimes such as illicit drugs, GBV and teenage pregnancies, environmental conservation and road safety.
Particularly during the week dedicated to fighting illicit drugs, Police and partners in governance, justice and health disposed of 1,600kgs and 8,324 pellets of cannabis; 34,157 sachets of assorted illicit gin packed in banned polythene bags; and over 241,000 litres of kanyanga and locally distilled illicit substances seized in separate Police operations countrywide.
They also provided psycho-trauma counselling and medical assistance to teenage mothers and victims of gender-based violence in various parts of the country.
IGP Dan Munyuza addressing residents of Cyumba in Gicumbi District. / Courtesy
Around 230 teen mothers were mobilized and helped to register their children.
"Security is a wide aspect, poor living conditions means being insecure. RNP emphasizes human security in its policing structures to support the nation's development agenda. This is done not only by improving the quality of life for Rwandans but also addressing concerns that would otherwise give rise to security issues and crime," IGP Munyuza said.
He reminded them of their duty to fight the pressing issue of drugs, which are still high and a serious concern in the districts of Gicumbi, Burera and Nyagatare.
gs of mayirungi (khat) were also seized in Gicumbi alone in the same period.
The Police Chief also highlighted the issue of local groups that engage in trafficking, especially of assorted narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, and which at times assault people or attempt to fight security organs.
"Be the first to fight these criminal and violent acts; these are your children, spouses, relatives and neighbours. We call for your responsiveness against these criminal groups," Munyuza said.
On the Police stations, the Police Chief said that it was in line with the ongoing efforts to bring Police services closer to the people and to further improve safety and security as they go about their development activities.
Also present was the Governor of the Northern Province, Jean Marie Vianney Gatabazi, who acknowledged the role of youth volunteers, former drug dealers and anti-drug clubs in breaking chains of illicit drug suppliers.
In other provinces, the closing of the Police Month was presided over by provincial governors and RNP leadership representatives, among others.
Beneficiaries speak out
Semikizi Kayonga, a genocide survivor of Gaseke, Mutete Sector in Gicumbi, who was given a decent home, attributed the support to good leadership under President Paul Kagame.
"It is always a good thing to have a decent house of your own like this," Kayonga said.
He added: "I lost my family in the genocide and I was left for dead, but this government gave me hope to live, gave me a house but it was destroyed by rains but today RNP has given me a decent fully-equipped house with solar energy. We are blessed to have a country where the Police dedicate its services to improve the quality of living for the people."
Another beneficiary, Mariam Uwazayire, a mother of seven from Nyagatare District, Rwempasha Sector was all joy.
"Today, my children will sleep well; we all strive to give our children the best in life, I am thankful that our leaders support us in that," Uwazayire said.