ELE Rwanda awards best youth entrepreneurs

Emerging leaders and Entrepreneurs organization (ELE) awarded five best youth entrepreneurs and innovators for the first time in Rwanda to boost youth self reliance.

The categories awarded included best creativity award, best innovator of the year, most desired place to work place and Innovation champion.

Speaking at the event, RBD Chief Operating Officer, Claire Akamanzi urged the youth to be innovative and creative because the government is fully in support of the youth.

“We have support systems for potential entrepreneurs in Rwanda and the government is ready to back up young people with fresh ideas and how to market their products on international markets,” says Ms Claire Akamanzi.

ELE Rwanda awards best youth entrepreneurs

RDBChief Operating Officer Claire Akamanzi

 Rwanda has set up business development centers across the country to help young potential entrepreneurs where they can share ideas, make research and guide them to exploit their ideas into real earning business.

The government also set aside funds to support young entrepreneurs and innovators through business development fund (BDF).

CEO ELE Rwanda Yves Iradukunda

CEO ELE Rwanda Yves Iradukunda

 “This is the beginning but every year, we will be awarding young innovators from every sector and support them to market their products outside Rwanda,” said CEO ELE Rwanda Yves Iradukunda.

The youth entrepreneurs awarded included, Creativity Awards: Student Entrepreneurship Network (SEN), Innovator of the year: Torque LTD, Most desired workplace: Tigo Rwanda, Innovation Champion: Babson Rwanda Entrepreneurship Center.

“Am excited about the award and happy that our country recognizes our efforts, creativity as young generation hence giving us opportunity to expose our ideas,” acknowledged award winner, founder of Torgue Ltd and soft ware developer Jean Twagira.

Founder of Torgue Ltd Jean Twagira

Founder of Torgue Ltd Jean Twagira

 Twagira is a young Rwandan who has managed to develop a software used by Bralirwa and its distributors called Torgue work space to ease the follow up of distribution data as well as sale records.

The Emerging Leaders and Entrepreneurs of Rwanda (ELE Rwanda) is a youth entrepreneurship platform with a mission to “inspire, motivate and empower young adults to become active participants in the economy and development of Rwanda.

” It connects students to innovators, advocates, mentors and investors through a string of activities.

Fitch Ratings Upgrades Rwanda to ‘B+’; Outlook Stable

Fitch Ratings has upgraded Rwanda’s Long-term foreign and local currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDR) to ‘B+’ from’B’.

The Outlooks are Stable. The issue ratings on Rwanda’s senior unsecured foreign and local currency bonds have also been upgraded to ‘B+’ from ‘B’. The Country Ceiling has been upgraded to ‘B+’ from ‘B’ and the Short-term foreigncurrency IDR affirmed at ‘B’.


The upgrade of Rwanda’s IDRs reflects the following key rating drivers and their relative weights: High Economic growth prospects are strong. GDP growth averaged 6.9%in 2009-2014 in a stable macro environment, supported by structural reforms.

In 2014, Fitch expects real GDP growth to be 6.5% and to increase to 7%-8% in the medium term, in line with performance during the past decade. Growth will benefit from stronger regional integration within the East African Community and rapid gains in agriculture, mines, tourism and services.

The business environment is the second best in Africa according to the World Bank. Rwanda has a track record of prudent and coherent fiscal and monetary policy management evident in moderate inflation (average 4.6% in2010-2013) and limited depreciation of the exchange rate (-2% in 2012 against the US dollar and -5% in 2013) and successfully steering the economy through the testing donor crisis in 2012/13 when aid disbursements were frozen.

Medium Prudent fiscal policy following external debt cancellation under the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries initiative has ensured public debtremains moderate (at 30% of GDP vs. 43% for the ‘B’ peers median). Fitch expects the budget deficit to narrow from 5.1% of GDP in fiscal year 2013/14 (FY14) to 3.5%by FY16 thanks to lower net lending (after the proceeds of the 2023 Eurobond have been lent on to public companies) and capital spending, control of current expenditure and higher taxes. Lessons have been learnt from the donor crisis in 2012/13 to minimise the risk of cuts in aid.

The main focus of the new Policy Support Instrument with the IMF is to raise government revenues. Tax receipts were 13.7% of GDP in FY12, 15.2% in FY14 and Fitch expects it could be 15.9% in FY16, thanks to efficiency gains, reforms (notably in agriculture) and GDP growth. The structure of aid inflows is also changing with less general budget support and more project/sectoral loans, which are less sensitive to political pressure.

Rwanda’s ‘B+’ IDRs also reflect the following key rating drivers:The current account deficit (CAD) is structurally high at anexpected 9.5% of GDP in 2014, reflecting the large trade imbalance. It will remain high in the medium term given continuing high imports for building infrastructure.

The CAD will be financed by aid inflows and FDI (about 3% of GDP every year). Fitch expects the rebuilding of foreign reserves, after the depletion related to the donor crisis, will be slow as a result. Reserves are expected to cover 3.8 months of current account payments in 2015 (from 3.7 in 2014).

Dependence on international aid is high albeit declining. Grants accounted for 44% of budget revenues in FY11, 35% in FY14 and are forecast tobe 29% of budget revenues in FY16. Rwanda’s GDP per capita (USD693) and Human Development Index are low.

Political uncertainty is the main risk to stability. The key political date is the 2017 presidential election. It is uncertain whether President Kagame will stand down or change the constitution to enable him to run for a third term. Although that event would likely trigger an adverse reaction from parts of the international community, we do not believe it would necessarily precipitate a permanent halt to donor inflows or major domestic upheaval.


The Stable Outlook reflects Fitch’s assessment that upside and downside risks to the rating a recurrently well-balanced. The main factors that could lead topositive rating action are:

- Strong GDP growth leading to an increase in GDP per capita over time, closer to peer medians.

- Continued expansion and diversification of the limited export base that would support the narrowing of the CAD and help accumulation offoreign reserves.

- A significant rise in the tax take, reduction in dependence on international donor support and increased financing flexibility.

The main factors that could lead to negative rating action are:

- A material threat to political stability.

- A material cut in donor aid that would affect foreign exchange inflows and trigger macro instability.

- A sharp drop in Rwanda’s export receipts (including mining, tea and coffee exports).


Although there may well be some increase in political uncertainty around the 2017 presidential elections, Fitch assumes no major domestic unrest and that broad political stability will prevail. Fitch assumes Rwanda will continue to successfully implement structural reforms and prudent economic policies with the support of the International Monetary Fund.

Fitch expects Rwanda will continue to benefit from high aid inflows to support its development. Fitch forecasts demand for Rwanda’s exports (including minerals, tea and coffee) will benefit from a gradual recovery in the global economy, with world GDP growth forecast to increase to 2.9% in 2014 and 3.2% in 2015 from 2.4% in 2013.

Rwandans expelled from Tanzania find new hope back home

Rwandans expelled from Tanzania find new hope back homeOdette Bayagambe, 39, had always considered Tanzania her home, until the afternoon of August 9, 2013 when Tanzanian security operatives attacked her home and forced her to leave the country.

“I had just taken goats to graze,” she says. “As I stood in the middle of our banana plantation, four Tanzanian soldiers came to our home and shouted at me, ‘RudiKwenu’ [Kiswahili phrase meaning ‘Go back home’]”.

She was forced out of Tanzania, leaving behind 30 goats, land plots, a three hectares cassava plantation, a banana plantation, and her house and all other properties.

Tanzania’s President Jakaya Kikwete had ordered all “illegal immigrants” be expelled with due effect. Thousands of people from neighboring Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya and Burundi have lived in Tanzania for decades. Others have a long ancestral linage.

Following Kikwete’s directive, more than 14,000 Rwandans were kicked out of the country, indefinitely. Many were not given the opportunity to pack their properties or sell them.

Tanzanian security operatives stormed the villages,smashed the houses, burnt some of them, looted properties and mercilessly beat up many.

Those who managed to escape, abandoned everything; land, houses, animals, plantations, businesses, and left without bidding farewell to neighbors and friends.

Some bribed officers not to be tortured. The rest were rounded up and forced into trucks, drove them off and dumped them at the Rwandan border.

Tanzania’s action sent shock waves in the neighboring countries. Many wondered how Tanzania lost a camaraderie spirit.

Rwanda responds to the influx

In Rwanda, pressure was mounting. Government quickly set up a transit camp at Kiyanzi in Eastern Rwanda, with necessary facilities such as shelter, food and water, to accommodate the returnees.

Villagers signed up to volunteer setting up the camps. Others donated money, food items and clothing in big numbers.

About 9,000 families were helped locate their ancestral relatives. “We also provided them with a three months’ food package; beans, rice, maize, salt, cooking oil and boxes of compact rice for the children and the elderly,” says Séraphine Mukantabana, Rwanda’s Minister for Disaster Management and Refugee Affairs (MIDIMAR).

Over 5,000 families remained in the camp, including Bayagambe’s. Government continued supporting them. Life was not the same anymore. Those who joined their relatives have managed to cope up, somewhat. Those in the camps cursed, but the government says camps are temporary.

On June 28, at a community gathering, with hundreds of villagers and local authorities in attendance, 40 families, including Bayagambe’s, had not prepared themselves for a big surprise.

The Minister of Local Government, James Musoni, called each family and handed them keys to magnificent fully furnished houses. Each house costs Rwf12 million (about 20,000USD). An average Rwandan lives in a house of one million, slightly more than 1000USD.

These houses have massive living rooms, two furniture bedrooms, an equipped kitchen, a store, and an attractive tilled washroom. They have access to utilities, electricity and clean water. President Paul Kagame pledged Rwf480 million (about 700,000USD) to help build these houses.

Returnees adjust to new lifestyle

On a sunny Tuesday afternoon, Bayagambe, with her four children, days after she occupied the house, sits on a bluish carpet laid at a veranda of her new home, enjoying the cool breeze blowing uphill from the curvy valley of Kicukiro district, on the outskirts of Rwanda’s capital, Kigali.


She takes a rest while listening to local pop music playing on a local radio station. She keeps receiving flashbacks of the horror in Tanzania.

She feels somehow lonely. Her husband escaped the operation and stayed in Tanzania, although both have managed to keep contact. But it’s a completely new life.

Indeed, her heart is torn apart, with divided sentiments. One heart in Rwanda, another in Tanzania. “I have not yet felt at home here, but partly enjoying the peaceful Rwanda,” she says. “I hope I will eventually feel at home as a Rwandan.”

Understandably, though, like thousands of others, starting a new life from scratch is an excruciating experience, especially in the land scarce Rwanda. There is no enough land for cultivation especially for those who are farmers.

Florence Uwayisaba, the Vice Mayor in charge of welfare in Kicukiro district, says the district has allocated start-up capital of Rwf100, 000 (about 150$) to help run small business and earn an income.

Community members have also donated food to the families. Each family is getting 50kgs of beans, 25kgs of rice, 25kgs of corn flour and cooking oil.

Neighbors regularly visit and give them comfort. “They are nice people,”says Pacifique Munyaneza, 23, Bayagambe’s neighbor. They don’t speak fluent Kinyarwanda, but “We visit them and chat in Kinyarwanda,” he adds.

Children have also started going to school. “There is no problem at school. I play with other children”, says Bayagambe’s14 years old daughter, AminataYampiriye, who goes to a nearby primary school.

Dismas Habimana, 47, is a father of two, whose wife and children still live in Tanzania. He raised cows and wonders what else he will be doing to earn a living.

“I had 120 cows, and I left all of them in Tanzania”, he says, from his temporary shelter at Ruhashya sector, Huye district, a two hours’ drive south from the capital Kigali. He has heard that his uncle who stayed back is looking after the cows.

Meanwhile, more families are being settled across the country, according to MIDIMAR. “We have given them shelter at the sector headquarters as we complete more houses by August”, said Jacqueline Uwamariya, the executive secretary of Ruhashya sector of Huye district.

Four families, including Habimana’s, have been living here at Ruhashya sector headquarters since January from the Kiyanzi camp.

Here, community members also contributed 1.5 tones in beans, rice, Irish potatoes, mattresses and clothing to support the four families. Authorities of Ruhashya sector are looking for land to allocate to them so that they can cultivate.

“I have asked my wife to come and join me here, but she refused”, says Habimana.

Like many, Dismas Habimana says going back to Tanzania is not an option. He has already acquired a Rwandan National Identification Card and plans to marry another woman if his wife insists on staying in Tanzania. “What else can I do?” he regrets.

Source : KT Press

Ruhango: Local saving cooperative completes house to accommodate bank

m_Ruhango Local saving cooperative completes house to accommodate bank

CLECAM Ejoheza, a credit and saving cooperative for farmers in Bweramana sector of Ruhango district built a building worth Rwf109 million to ensure security and attract more customers and members.

The milestone comes following the concern by many on the security of the money in a place where it previously operated.gs.

This was revealed on July 15th 2014 during the event to officially open the house by CLECAM cooperative located in Bweramana sector of Ruhango district.

“This house comes as an answer to our problems. We had a need to provide more security to members’ property,” said Aimable Mpamyarukundo, president of the cooperative.

Local saving cooperative completes house to accommodate bank 2

The house is expected to strengthen security of the members’ property


Damien Mugabo, Director General of the Rwanda Cooperative Agency (RCA) who was the guest speaker called on cooperative members to avoid mismanagement of cooperative funds that can lead to its collapse

m_Some dignitaries turned up for the official opening of CLECAM

Some dignitaries turned up for the official opening of CLECAM
Ejoheza cooperative house

“Be careful about who manages the cooperative funds. Good management will help you achieve your goals,” He said.

CLECAM Ejoheza cooperative started with Rwf46 million capital which has increased to Rwf583 million It was started in 2007 and has up to 130,000 members.


Nyagatare: Cooperatives credited for improving lives

Some association members have acquired cows and sell milk and manure

Some association members have acquired cows and sell milk and manure

Nyagatoma cell administration in Tabagwe sector of Nyagatare district has embarked on the drive to form cooperatives because it speeds up social economic development of the residents.

Residents formed cooperatives which enable them access bank loans to set up small income generating activities.

“No resident lives in grass thatched house or sleeps on a mat because forming cooperatives improved their livelihoods,” stressed Charles Murenzi, executive secretary of Nyagatoma cell.

“We get bank loans through cooperatives and work hard for social development,” said Josianne Nyiranshimiyimana, a tailor.

 Members have livestock that give manure to increase crop productivity

Members have livestock that give manure to increase crop productivity

There are 81 associations and up to eight cooperatives in Agasongero village, Nyagatoma cell, Tabagwe sector in Nyagatare district. Most of the associations are agriculture based.

RUSIZI: Bariyemeza kuzaba abambere mu gutanga imisoro

Abagize inama ngishwanama ku misoro mu karere ka Rusizi biyemeje gufatanya n’ikigo cy’imisoro n’amahoro (Rwanda Revenue Authority) mu gukomeza gukangurira abacuruzi kwitabira gutanga umusoro kandi bagakoresha imashini zitanga inyemezabwishyu kimwe no kurwanya ubucuruzi bwa magendo bukigaragara hirya no hino, Ibi babitangarije mu nama nyunguranabitekerezo iterana buri gihembwe yahuje abayobozi b’akarere ka Rusizi , ubuyobozi bw’abikorera muri ako karere n’abagize ako kanama mu karere ka Rusizi.

 m_Bariyemeza kuzaba abambere mu gutanga imisoro

Muri iyi nama ngishwanama ku misoro mu karere ka Rusizi hagaragajwe ko nubwo hari intambwe imaze guterwa mu guhindura imyumvire mibi  abacuruzi bari basanzwe bafite mu kutitabira gahunda yo gutanga imisoro  ,ngo haracyagaragara  ibibazo bibangamira gahunda yo gutanga imisoro nkuko bikwiye. Ibiza ku isonga ni  magendu, cyane ku uturere dukora ku imipaka y’ibindi bihugu, abacuruzi banga kugaragaza ukuri kubukode bw’amazu kimwe n’abanga gukoresha ikoranabuhanga mu kumenyekanisha imisoro no gutanga inyemeza bwishyu kugirango ibyo bacuruje bitagaragara.

m_Bariyemeza kuzaba abambere mu gutanga imisoro1

 Ibi byose ngo biri mu bidindiza iterambere ry’igihugu bityo umuyobozi w’akarere ka Rusizi Nzeyimana Oscar akaba avuga ko bagiye gufata ingamba hamwe n’inzego z’akarere zikorera muri aka karere mu gukumira magendu n’ibindi byose bibangamira imisoro dore ko ariyo yubaka ikihutisha n’iterambere ry’igihugu. aha kandi umuyobozi w’akarere yavuze ko bagiye gukora cyane kuburyo ngo bazaba abambere mu gutanga imisoro muri aka karere banakoresha imashini zitanga inyemeza bwishyu zemewe

Ndatsikira Evode,umuyobozi w’ikigo cy’igihugu gishinzwe imisoro n’amahoro muntara y’uburengerazuba Rwanda Revenue Authority akaba asaba abacuruzi n’abaguzi kugira umuco wo kubahiriza amategeko ajyanye n’ubucuruzi mugihe abaguzi baguze ibicuruzwa bagahabwa inyemezwa bwishyu n’abacuruzi nabo bakagira umuco wo gutanga inyemeza bwishyu, aha Ndatsikira Evode yanashimiye akarere ka Rusizi kuba karabaye mu turere twa mbere twitabira kugura imashini zitanga inyemezabwishyu zemewe (Electronic billing machine)

Habyarimana Gilbert umuyobozi w’urugaga rw’abikorera mu karere ka Rusizi avuga ko nyuma y’inama bahawe ngo bagiye gushyira mu byiciro abacuruzi kugirango babashe kumenyana bityo bizanabafashe kumenya abadatanga imisoro ibyo kandi ngo bizabafasha kugabanya akajagari kakorwaga mu bucuruzi bitume n’imisoro iboneka

Akarere ka Rusizi kari mu turere twa mbere twitabiriye kugura imashini zitanga inyemeza bwishyu zemewe ubu kakaba kinjiza miliyari imwe na miliyoni magana abiri, ngo mu myaka 3 ishize binjizaga miliyoni zitarenga magana atatu ibi bikaba bitanga icyizere cy’uko umwaka utaha bazinjiza miliyari imwe na miliyoni magana ane.

Gicumbi: Youth get self-employment tips

Gicumbi: Youth get self-employment tips

Bosco Karanganwa, Labour Inspector in Gicumbi district urges youth to create jobs for sustainable development

Youth in Gicumbi district were urged to set up income generating activities for social-economic development.

 “Some youth stay unemployed for long in pursuit of white collar jobs and yet job creation brings fast development,” said Bosco Karanganwa; Labour Inspector in Gicumbi district

“Youth should embrace job creation, working with financial institutions for small loans to start small businesses,” advised Alexandre Mvuyekure, mayor of Gicumbi district.

The government of Rwanda encourages residents especially youth to create jobs under Hanga Umurimo (create own job) programme.

The programme aims at sensitising the population to come up with creative ideas for job creation, empower communities with basic business skills and identify individuals with entrepreneurial aptitude and nurture good and bankable business ideas.

Rulindo: umuco wo kwaka inyemezabuguzi nturahagera kuko ari akarere k’icyaro.


Abacuruzi kimwe n’abaguzi bo mu karere ka Rulindo, ngo basanga umuco wo kwaka inyemezabuguzi muri aka karere utari wahagera, ahanini ngo bigaterwa nuko bafite imyunvire yo kumva ko ari abo mu cyaro.

Tariki 17/4/2014, Abaturage twaganiriye bavugaga ko kwaka inyemezabuguzi ,akenshi ngo biba bigomba gukorwa n’abacuruzi bakomeye ,baba barangura ibicuruzwa byinshi,mu rwego rwo kugira ngo badakeka ko ibyo baguze byakwitwa Frode.

Umwe mu bacuruzi mu karere ka Rulindo witwa Biziyaremye Martin twaganiriye,aravuga ko nta nyemezabuguzi ajya aha abakiriya be ,ngo kuko nabo ntayo baba bamwatse ,bityo akunva ko Atari ngombwa.

Yagize ati”Nta na rimwe njya ntanga inyemezabuguzi,kuko nta mukiriya ujya ayaka.Ikindi kandi sinatanga inyemezabuguzi ku umuntu uba agura ikintu gito,impanvu ni uko nunva ko abagura ibintu byinshi kandi by’agaciro ari baba bakwiye guhabwa izo nyemezabuguzi. Jye nsanga ari n’ibyo mu mujyi naho twe bo mu cyaro nunva bitatureba.”

Uyu mucuruzi akomeza avuga ko kuba abaguzi bo mu karere ka Rulindo badafite umuco wo kwaka inyemezabuguzi bituma n’abacuruzi batabyitaho bityo ntibihabwe imbaraga ngo nabo bazitange.

Bosco Kanamugire Yagize ati”Sinjya naka inyemezabuguzi kuko nunva nta cyo yamarira,nunva uwaka iyo nyemezabuguzi ari ucuruza mu gihe yagiye kurangura.Naho se ubu  naba nje kugura ikiro cy’umuceri cyangwa fanta,nkaka inyemezabuguzi y’iki .”

Ndahayo ELiab Umukozi w’ikigo k’igihugu cy’imisoro n’amahoro mu karere ka Rulindo,avuga ko muri rusange abaturage bo muri aka karere asanga bataracengerwamo n’umuco wo kwaka inyemezabuguzi.

Akaba asanga bigisaba imbaraga ,ngo kuko Rulindo ari akarere k’icyaro, bityo abagatuye bakaba bafite umuco wo kunva ko inyemezabuguzi zigomba gukoreshwa  n’abatuye mu mijyi gusa.

Uyu mukozi akaba avuga ko asanga hagomba ubukangurambaga ku bijyanye no gukangurira aba baturage kwaka inyemezabuguzi,no kuyitanga ku bacuruzi,ngo kuko bifite umumaro munini haba ku umuguzi nyirizina no ku gihugu cye muri rusange.

Nyamagabe gets multi-million Vocational Institute

First Lady takes a look at some of the products from the vocational school students

First Lady takes a look at some of the products from the vocational school students

The Southern district of Nyamagabe inaugurated a technical and vocational institute worth at Rwf357 million with the capacity to accommodate over 115 students.

The institute was inaugurated on March 31, 2014 in Cyanika Sector, resulting from advocacy of the First Lady Mrs. Jeannette Kagame, the head of Unity Club.

The school will teach; Food processing, tailoring, carpentry, creative arts, welding, mechanics and many other courses.

Saemaul Zero hunger Communities, a project that develops locals through renovation works and proving profitable business plans was introduced as well. The projects are expected to create employment and increase harvest.

“Utilise these projects for development and self reliance. Work hard, save, get out of poverty through the Economic Development Poverty Reduction Strategies and other government programs as these,” advised First Lady, Jeanette Kagame at the inauguration.

The Cyanika Technical and Vocational School was built on the funding of Workforce Development Authority (WDA) while other project was funded by South Korean government.

Nyabihu: Cooperatives credit ‘teamwork’ for success

Members of cooperatives operating in Nyabihu District say they have achieved various goals towards development through teamwork, a spirit they are prepared to share with other people not working in cooperatives.

COARU Cooperative has received 2 machines processing the produce for better operations. These prompted Nyabihu district to give the cooperative two more for the same purpose to ensure provision of good services and produce.

Deogratias Habyarimana a member of COARU Cooperative in Jomba sector that processes wheat and maize says this cooperative has been the basis for its members’ development beyond their expectations.

Deogratias Habyarimana a member of COARU Cooperative talks of benefits of team work

Deogratias Habyarimana a member of COARU Cooperative talks of benefits of team work

This cooperative has been distributing goats and sheep to each member to provide manure and these members receive mutuelle de santé (medical insurance) from the cooperative.

Beverages made by one of the cooperatives

Beverages made by one of the cooperatives

The benefits of team work through cooperatives were also discussed by Gentille Mukamwiza a member of KOTUNYA Cooperative that operates in Lake Karago in fishing.

This cooperative has helped its members to develop economically, encourages good nutrition among members, and provides credit services and social support to each member in need of these services.

Mukamusoni Charlotte who learnt tailoring after joining a cooperative says her dreams have all been realized due to the benefits of working together as a team.

Rwanda is promoting team work through formation of cooperatives and associations towards development. For people who have realized the secret of team work say cooperatives are the source of knowledge, development, wealth and social growth.


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