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Liberation Day celebration to be held at village level, President Kagame to address the nation

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Activities to mark the 19th Anniversary of Rwanda’s liberation will be carried out at village level this year. This was revealed by Minister of Sports and Culture, Protais Mitali at the Post Cabinet press conference held yesterday to discuss various key items decided during the Cabinet meeting of June 28.

Liberation Day celebrations will be held on July 4 under the theme \”Celebrating Africa’s Renaissance, Working towards Self-reliance\”. This year, liberation will encompass the wider theme of African renaissance and our commitment as Rwandans to do our part by becoming self reliant.

‘‘We decided to celebrate this year’s liberation at the village level so that Rwandans own the liberation process. We have liberated the country from genocide and ethnic wars but we haven’t liberated ourselves from poverty which needs every citizen to do their part,\” said Min. Mitali.

Minister Mitali also announced a national conference to be held today at Kigali Institute of Sciences and Technology in light of the 50 year anniversary of the African Union. The theme of the conference is \”Pan-Africanism and African Renaissance: Owning our destiny.

Other activities to mark the 19th liberation include the inauguration of Kami barracks which has been rehabilitated by RDF members serving as peacekeepers. The barracks will also include a section of 150 houses for genocide survivors and people repatriated from high risk zones.To mark the event, President Paul Kagame will deliver the keynote address.

Other items discussed at post Cabinet press conference.

During the press conference, Minister of State in charge of Transport, Dr. Alexis Nzahabwanimana presented the government’s revised Fleet Policy. Some changes include that government institutions will now be able to contract with successful bidders for government related transport in their institutions without having to go through the Ministry of Infrastructure.

Other changes include a maximum cap of Rwf 25 million for civil servants car facilitation down from Rwf 35 million. ‘‘However, officials who buy vehicles whose value is in excess of the maximum ceiling shall be liable to pay extra taxes. Also, the loan repayment period has increased from 4 years to 5 years to harmonise with the vehicle replacement period,’’ Dr. Nzahabwanimana said.

The government also plans to heavily invest in public transportation and continue to focus on improving infrastructure and roads.

Changes in higher learning tuition fees

The previous Cabinet Meeting also approved a revision in the policy on Tertiary Education Financing making way for affordable tuition fees.

‘‘Students in Ubudehe categories 1 &2 shall receive 100% of government support in the form of loans for tuition fees and living allowances. Those in categories 3 and 4 will receive 50% loans for tuition but no living allowances. Students in category 5 and 6 will fully cater for themselves for all costs of tertiary education,’’ said Dr. Mathias Harebamungu, Minister of State in charge of Primary and Secondary Education.

Tuition fees for sciences and non-science programmes have gone from Rwf 830, 000 per academic year to Rwf 600,00. As well, registration and caution fees be harmonised and fixed at Rwf 50, 000 Rwf.

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