In 2022 millions of Rwandans will resume flocking to Nyarugenge’s former maximum prison home not to check on convicts but to communicate with God.
For almost 90 years the spot was heavily guarded by both very high perimeter walls and armed police and prison wardens as inmates inside served various sentences.
Prison centrale de Kigali was a place for lawbreakers that the country’s long arm of the law had preferred for correction.
In July 2018 Rwanda Correctional Services (RCS) transferred the last batch of inmates to a new Mageragere correctional facility also located in the outskirts of the capital Kigali.
Rwanda’s largest religious organization was offered the 5.5 hectares of this space to develop a modern cathedral for the Kigali archdiocese.
Archbishop Antoine Kambanda says the church’s team is still designing the architectural plan for the new cathedral. “The general plan entails the cathedral and administrative offices for the archdiocese a compound and other structures relevant with activities of the organisation.”
The cathedral is being designed to accommodate a 5000-strong congregation and the compound envisaged to host a maximum of 20000 people especially on calendar day celebrations.
Archbishop Kambanda also said the design will entail a Rwandan reflection, “ we have not yet approved the design but if we do, then we shall know the proposed cost of the project.”
According to Kigali city authority, the construction of the Roman Catholic cathedral is expected for completion in 2021.