Information received overnight from RDB sources confirms that the long awaited fence construction around key sections of the Akagera National Park has finally commenced, to the relief of neighbouring communities. The entire fence will be approximately covering a distance of 120 kilometres at a cost of almost 2.8 million US Dollars at present prices. At hand at the ground breaking ceremony were the RDB Chief Executive John Gara and members of the Akagera Management Company which is a joint venture between African Parks and the Rwanda Development Board.
The electric re-enforced triple fence will keep rogue animals inside the park and prevent further destruction of crops as well as damage to other property, injuries and loss of life as seen in the past and residents living near the park were overwhelmed, according to an eye witness, when the ground was broken.
However, the commitments to protect the communities were made when the joint venture between African Parks and the RDB were signed and with funds now available – parliament in Kigali just last week asked government to increase the allotted funding to speed up and complete the work sooner than envisaged initially – the construction is finally underway.
Most affected members of the community were on the occasion also given financial compensation by RDB for the crop losses suffered in the past weeks.