Gasabo intermediate court has dropped a case involving residents of two slums – Kangodo I & II and Kibiraro I also known as ‘Bannyahe’ against Gasabo district.
The ruling was announced on Monday in a case that started last year, but never reached the level of hearing in substance.
Last year, Gasabo had proposed to expropriate the residents in exchange of new apartments under construction in Busanza, Kicukiro district.
The city wants this slum to look like the high-end Nyarutarama neighbourhood across the road.
More than 700 complainants in this case refused this expropriation model and asked Gasabo to pay them expropriation fee and go wherever they want to settle, which Gasabo refused.
On February 7, 2019 when the case was expected to start in substance, Gasabo district attorney Justin Niyo Rushikana told the court that the case is not relevant.
He defended that, among others, in cases that involve public entities like in this one; residents should first proceed by filing their complaint to several public organs before taking it up for litigation.
The court on February 11 ruled in favour of Gasabo district, maintaining that residents should have complained before the city of Kigali before seizing ministry of local government.
The court also supported the argument that the citizen should file their cases separately.
The complainant said they need to consult their two lawyers and start an appeal process.
“We appealed several times to City of Kigali and the city invited the ministry of local government to join hands and intimidate us. How can court say that we broke procedures?” Antoine Mushimiyimana, one of the complainants told KT Press.
“We shall never give up until we get justice,” Jean de Dieu Shikama, another complainant supported.
The houses where Gasabo district wants to relocate the ‘Bannyahe’ residents are at finishing phase.