Voice of Sport

Habineza back at old portfolio and to host Kagame Cup in matter of days

Local focus in Rwanda is on three Kigali teams going for honours at Cecafa regional soccer championship

HE used to be the familiar and enthusiastic minister in charge of sport in Rwanda and prominent in the organization of Cecafa football activity both inside the country and outside.

Three years ago, Joseph “Joe” Habineza left to take up posting as Rwanda’s High Commissioner to Nigeria. But on Thursday, he was back as the Rwanda Sports and Culture Minister when a new cabinet was announced by also new Prime Minister Anastase Murekezi.

New faces

Murekezi dropped seven ministers among then Sports and Culture’s Protais Mitali whom Habineza replaces.

Other new faces in Cabinet include Gérardine Mukeshimana (Agriculture), Francis Kaboneka (Local Government and Social Affairs), Francis Gatare (CEO, Rwanda Development Board), Patrick Ndimubanzi (Primary and Public Health Care), Uzziel Ndagijimana (State, Economic Planning), Tony Nsanganira (State, Agriculture) and Olivier Rwamukwaya (State, Primary and Secondary Education).

One of Habineza’s immediate sports task will be to host the Cecafa [Council of East and Central Africa Football Associations] Kagame Cup Club Championship his country hosts between August 8 and 24.

Fixture announcement

The Kagame Cup preps were in full swing and the fixtures had already been announced by Cecafa Secretary General Nicholas Musonye in Nairobi on Wednesday.

In Rwanda, excitement about and attention was on the country’s three teams that will be taking part.

Champions Rayon Sport will start their regional campaign against five-time winners Young Africans of Tanzania on August 8 at Amahoro stadium.

Three-time winners

The following day, Police will take on Sudan’s former African champions El Merreikh while three-time Kagame Cup winners APR will wind up the day’s action against Burundi’s Flambeau de l’est.

Rayon Sport will face Ethiopia’s Coffee on August 10 in their group’s second game at Amahoro stadium before switching the remaining group matches to Kigali Regional Stadium in Nyamirambo.

“The Blues” will take on Zanzibar’s KMKM on August 14 before winding up their group stage action against Atlabara of South Sudan two days later.

Defending champs

APR will meet Telecom of Djibouti on August 13; Kenya champions Gor Mahia on August 15 and KCCA of Uganda two days later while Police face Kagame Cup defending champions Vital’O of Burundi on August 11 and Benadir of Somalia on August 14.

In other matches, Uganda’s KCCA FC will kick off their action against Kenya’s Gor Mahia. Gor Mahia is a familiar side with former Uganda Cranes coach Bobby Williamson as their tactician, yet the Kenyan champions are home to strikers Dan Sserunkuma & Arthur Semazzi, defenders Israel Emuge and Godfrey Walusimbi plus midfielder Godfrey Baba Kizito.

FULL CABINET LIST of Rwanda Government:

Prime Minister:
Anastase Murekezi

Agriculture and Animal Resources:
Géraldine Mukeshimana

Cabinet Affairs:
Stella Ford Mugabo

CEO, Rwanda Development Board, and Cabinet Minister:
Francis Gatare

James Kabarebe

Disaster Management and Refugee Affairs:
Séraphine Mukantabana

East African Community Affairs:
Amb. Valentine Rugwabiza

Prof. Silas Lwakabamba

Finance and Economic Planning:
Claver Gatete

Foreign Affairs and Cooperation:
Louise Mushikiwabo

Gender and Family Promotion in the Prime Minister’s Office:
Oda Gasinzigwa

Dr Agnès Binagwaho

James Musoni

Internal Security:
Sheikh Mussa Fazil Harerimana

Johnston Busingye

Local Government and Social Affairs:
Francis Kaboneka

Natural Resources:
Dr Vincent Biruta 

Office of the President:
Vénantie Tugireyezu

Public Service and Labour:
Judith Uwizeye

Sports and Culture:
Joseph Habineza

Trade and Industry:
François Kanimba

Youth and ICT:
Jean-Philbert Nsengimana

State Ministers

Minister of State in the Ministry of Agriculture:
Tony Nsanganira

Minister of State in charge of Primary and Secondary Education:
Olivier Rwamukwaya

Minister of State in charge of Technical and Vocational Education and Training:
Albert Nsengiyumva

Minister of State in charge of Cooperation:
Amb. Eugène-Richard Gasana

State Minister in charge of Public Health and Primary Health Care:
Patrick Ndimubanzi

Minister of State in charge of Energy and Water:
Germaine Kamayirese

Minister of State in charge of Transport:
Dr Alexis Nzahabwanimana

Minister of State in charge of Mining:
Evode Imena

Minister of State in charge of Social Affairs:
Dr Alivera Mukabaramba

Minister of State in charge of Economic Planning:
Dr. Uzziel Ndagijimana