New round of demolition of houses in Kigali put many families at the mercy of coronavirus infections

Global Campaign for Rwandans’ Human Rights strongly condemns the resume of systematic demolitions of the houses of the poor and middle classes in the city of Kigali.

These demolitions have been once again conducted with brutality, without giving residents time to move out and relocate.  

This new round of demolitions was announced on March 09, 2020 by the Minister of Local Administration Professor Anastase SHYAKA and the Mayor of Kigali Pudence RUBINGISA and started to be executed four days after on March 13, 2020. Between 1000 and 1500 families in several localities of the city of Kigali have been affected.

The relocation allowance of 90,000 Frw considered as three months rent, is not enough for families whose houses have been demolished. According to those families, the cheapest rent for a family house in Kigali is 50,000 Frw per month.

These demolitions come in addition to others carried out in December 2019, which have expelled 6,000 people from their homes, according to figures announced by Minister Anastase SHYAKA himself. 

We call on the Rwandan government and the city of Kigali:

  • To cease immediately the ongoing inhuman actions of demolishing the homes of poor and middle-class residents without giving them proper notice and offering them alternative accommodations.
  • To stop using weapons or police presence as a means of pressure;
  • To provide without delay alternative accommodations and means to all concerned victims, including children, single mothers, elderly and all vulnerable, who have been made homeless by demolition of their homes;
  • To compensate the owners of land and real estate up to the estimated market value of their properties;
  • To release all persons arrested for having expressed their anger about the demolition of their houses to the press;
  • To respect the law and the Rwandan Constitution
  • To ensure that the preparations of Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) do not become a hindrance to the poor people well-being. 
  • To ensure that no more demolitions are planned during the coronavirus pandemic period.