Cimerwa, the leading and only local integrated cement producer in Rwanda, has handed over 18 modern houses to families in Rusizi district as the company strengthens its corporate social investments (CSI) in areas and societies in which it operates.
The project worth Rwf 190m was developed in collaboration with Rusizi District and endorsed by the Rwanda Environmental Management Authority (REMA) and the Rwanda Natural Resource Authority).
According to Juvenal Rutaganda, the Strategic Initiative Manager of Cimerwa, the project benefits 18 families, which were being affected by the mining activities in Rusizi.
“Cimerwa has a limestone quarry at Mashyuza and there was a local community living around it, being affected by our mining activities. In 2015 Cimerwa sought advice from relevant authorities and the team visited the site and recommended that people living within 300 meters from the blasting line should leave the place,” Rutaganda said.
“Cimerwa therefore worked with the district of Rusizi and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed to construct 18 houses to relocate the affected families,” he added.
Under the MoU, Cimerwa made a payment of Rwf 153,884,719 in cash and 5,269 bags of cement, (each 32.5’ cement bag costing Rwf 7,750). Cimerwa also provided its earth moving equipment for the grounding works worth Rwf 1,495,000.
“The houses were constructed on land provided by the district of Rusizi, in Bugarama Sector, Ryankana Cell and It is the place allocated to IDP model houses in Rusizi. The modern houses are 5 blocks of 4 in one. Each block is accommodating 4 families and has a living room, 3 rooms, one livestock room, a washroom, toilet and a kitchen,” Rutaganda said.
The houses were released last week during a hand-over ceremony attended by the Minister of Local Governance Francis Kaboneka, the Governor of the Western Province Ildephonse Munyentwari and the CEO of Cimerwa Bheki Mthembu. Also in attendance were the Mayor of Rusizi District Frederic Harelimana, and the military and police commanders in the district.
Kaboneka commended Cimerwa for the good cooperation with government institutions and the commitment to ensure safety of the community living close to its operations. He also requested the beneficiaries of the houses to maintain them well and asked them to work in peace and harmony to improve their social welfare.
Cimerwa CEO Bheki Mthembu said that the company is committed to various CSI projects to support the government and the population in their efforts to build a strong nation.
Cimerwa is Rwanda’s only integrated cement producer. Established 30 years ago, the firm’s production plant is located in Bugarama, Rusizi district in South Western border of Rwanda.
Cimerwa is the only cement company in Rwanda that mines the raw materials, produces its own clinker concentrate, packs and sells cement for general and civil construction. Some of its products are exported to the DRC and Burundi. Cimerwa has invested $170 million in a new modern dry process production plant at its head office in Bugarama with a capacity to turn out of 600,000 tons per year. The plant was commissioned in August 2015.
Cimerwa is 51 per cent owned by PPC Ltd, Southern Africa’s largest cement producer. PPC Ltd has been in the cement business for more than 100 years and is a public company listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Cimerwa is committed to building strong partnerships with leaders and members of the local community. In the process, the firm has helped set up a number of initiatives geared at improving the livelihoods of the people.
About Cimerwa’s CSI activities:
Cimerwa is engaged in different CSI projects to improve the welfare of the population and help enterprising people. Some of them include clean water supply to community, a nursery school and a primary school and the production of tough-blocks. Others include a tailoring project, a carpentry workshop and a support Unity Club in the construction of houses for elderly survivors of the 1994 genocide against Tutsi.