Kagame’s “Clean” Kigali Should Learn From “Dirty” Kampala

By David Himbara

Kagame walking the streets of clean Kigali.

President Paul Kagame loves his capital city of Kigali. The city looks green and very neat. But Kagame’s Kigali has a dirty secret. A city of 1.3 million (same population size as Dallas in USA and Birmingham in the UK), Kigali has no sewage system of any kind. All the raw sewage from Kigali is released into the national and regional water systems.


Open sewers run through poorer neighborhoods of Kigali.

Surprise surprise — see what is happening in ”dirty” Kampala, Uganda

Kampala sewage treatment plant nearly completed.

Nearly completed in Kampala is what is said to be the largest sewerage treatment plant in East and Central Africa. The plant will not only treat sewerage but will also turn the recovered biomass into electricity. According to The Monitor,

”The project encompasses an ultra-modern sewerage treatment plant in Bugolobi, a sewerage pre-treatment plant in Kinawataka, a sewerage pumping station on Kibira road and 31km of sewer network… The plant will treat 45 million liters of wastewater daily and generate over 630kw of electricity using biogas for use in the plant.”

Come on Mr. Kagame, if you really want a clean city, build a sewage system. Otherwise, Kigali is smart on the outside but dirty on the inside. Your environmental credentials are fake. You banned plastic bags to impress while you dump raw sewage from 1.3 million Kigali inhabitants into Rwanda’s water system. Copy Kampala’s example and build a sewage system that turns biomass into electricity.