KIGALI, Rwanda, Oct. 17, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The relationship between Rwanda and Israel is growing stronger day by day. The latest being an experiment by the Rwandan parliament to save about half a million dollars in annual expenses.
The parliament will save more than $400,000 annually from collecting and recycling water, use of solar energy, and use of technology to save papers.
Rwanda will spend $1.8m to facilitate the program, referred to as the Green Parliament, where the Israeli Parliament, the Knesset, will share its expertise.
The Knesset Director General, Ronen Plot said they began with installing a 4,650sqm solar array on Rwanda's parliament rooftop in January 2014. He led a 7-member delegation of lawmakers from the Knesset.
With the solar facility, which includes a water heater, incandescent bulbs in the building have been replaced with power saving LEDs.
Sosthene Cyitatire, the Rwanda Senate Clerk said the parliament will save RWF 5m ($7,500) on electricity per month.
The Knesset is also helping with paper saving techniques by using internet in committee discussions and plenaries instead of piles of printed papers. Rwanda has 106 legislators – all with 3G connected laptops. Over 50,000 pages per year will be saved.
The two countries are forging stronger bilateral ties, largely shaped by shared interest; historical and political. The two nations have faced the worst catastrophes in human history. Over 6 million Jews were killed during the Holocaust. Rwanda's 1994 genocide wiped out over one million Tutsi in 100 days.
The Israeli delegation in Rwanda this week visited the Kigali Memorial Center, where 300,000 Tutsi genocide victims are laid. Plot said: "We are not only brothers, but twins. We share a common destiny."
Rwanda's president Paul Kagame was in Israel last year for high-level meetings with PM Benjamin Netanyahu. Kagame and the First Lady attended the fifth Israel Presidential Conference hosted by Israel President Shimon Peres and former US president, Bill Clinton.
Energiya Global, the world's leading investor in solar fields, has invested $23.7m in a 8.5MW plant.
Israel Foreign Affairs Minister Avigdor Liberman was in Rwanda in June. Rwanda is set to open an embassy in Tel Aviv soon.
The late Ann Heyman, a Jewish philanthropist, set up Agahozo Youth Village, for genocide orphans – now among the top high schools in Rwanda.
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SOURCE KT Press