Home NewsNational Urukumbuzi Dubai Case: Former Mayor Of Gasabo, Businessman Put On Remand For 30 Days

Urukumbuzi Dubai Case: Former Mayor Of Gasabo, Businessman Put On Remand For 30 Days

by Daniel Sabiiti
9:38 pm

Urukumbuzi Estate ‘Kwa Dubai’ has come under scrutiny over the quality of houses.

Gasabo Primary Court on Tuesday remanded suspects who were arrested in connection with the construction of substandard housing units located in Murama Cell, Kinyinya Sector, Gasabo district, which came in the spotlight recently after videos and photos of leaking roofs and collapsing walls circulated on social media.

Initially five people had been arrested on April 20, including four officials linked to Gasabo district, suspected of authorizing the construction of the controversial Urukumbuzi Village Estate, commonly known as “Kwa Dubai”, on suspicion of abuse of office and duty.

The suspects included the estate owner Jean Nsabimana, commonly known as “Dubai”, the former Mayor of Gasabo district, Stephen Rwamurangwa, Raymond Chretien Mberabahizi, Former Vice Mayor Gasabo District, Jeanne d’Arc, Nyirabihogo, former Director of One Stop Center at Gasabo district and Jean Baptiste Bizimana, the Gasabo district Engineer.

The case was recently submitted to the Gasabo court for prosecution and a bail ruling pronounced on May 16, 2023

Court ruled that four suspects be remanded for 30 mandatory remand time pending further investigation into their crimes, a ruling that was taken on ground that the suspects were of high interest in the case.

Those remanded include: Jean Nsabimana ‘Dubai’. Stephen Rwamulangwa, Mberabahizi Raymond Chretien, Jeanne d’Arc Nyirabihogo.

The court also handed a Rwf3Million bail bond to one of the suspects in the case, Theopiste Nkurikiyimfura, who was also ordered to appear in court every Friday for the next two months.

The detained officials were in office when Dubai commenced construction of the estates in 2015 after securing a contract with the Gasabo district in 2013.

According to investigation and standards reports done by the Rwanda Housing Authority (RHA) the housing units were found to be of substandard quality but officials had a hand in authorizing the construction and occupancy.

The controversial Urukumbuzi village attracted public attention after a video clip of houses falling down went viral mid-March.

Occupants said that the houses from Urukumbuzi real estate were crumbling because they were not erected on a foundation, among other technical shortfalls.

During the 2023 National Dialogue – Umushyikirano, the housing saga came into the spotlight after President Paul Kagame  spoke about it and said that, when there is a fatality caused by poor housing, lost lives should be blamed on officials who did not follow up on the case.

The quality of the houses has raised a major public debate, also saw President Paul Kagame weighing in, questioning how authorities permit construction of substandard houses which endanger the lives of people.

An assessment done by the City of Kigali showed that a big number of the houses were found to be substandard. Rwamurangwa and co-will now wait for the substantive trial to begin.


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