The closed Rwanda’s largest and oldest maximum-security prison, commonly known as 1930, will be turned into fabulous Catholic parish by next year, an official source revealed Wednesday in Kigali.
Originally built in 1830 by Belgian colonialists, the building was revamped as a prison after the genocide against Tutsis accommodating thousands of people convicted of genocide especially.
Since 2018, all inmates have been relocated to a newly constructed Mageragere prison located in the outskirts of Kigali City.
Most recently St. Michel Cathedral of Catholic church which is located close the statehouse and all other structures near the the same residence of President Paul Kagame were removed, because government officials viewed the buildings as a security threat.
Catholic bishops resisted tearing down the cathedral but, with the offer of the prison acreage, agreed to a deal, it said.
Colonial authorities built Nyarugenge Prison on a 5.5-acre site in 1930, but in 2018 the last batch of inmates were moved to a new facility.
According to news reports, Kigali’s urban planning officials asked the church to produce a design by the end of February. The construction would be completed by the end of 2023, it said.