The Institution of Engineers Rwanda (IER) this week welcomed 124 new members as part of strengthening its commitment to upholding professional standards in various fields of engineering across the country.
During its 2023 Engineering Convention and Annual General Assembly, held on Friday, June 30, the regulatory body of the engineering sector in Rwanda called on more practitioners to register and get certified.
Held under the theme “Climate Resilient Infrastructure,” the event attracted numerous IER members and engineering experts from Rwanda and beyond. Minister of Infrastructure, Ernest Nsabimana, and State Minister, Patricie Uwase, were among the attendees, emphasizing the importance of professional standards and the construction of infrastructure capable of withstanding climate challenges.
Officials who spoke during the event called on the engineers to uphold professional standards in order to contribute to the country’s development, and especially by building infrastructure that can withstand extreme weather events.
“Climate resilient infrastructure refers to the design, construction, and operation of infrastructure systems that are robust enough to withstand the impacts of climate change,” Nsabimana said.
“By incorporating flood-resistant structures and implementing sustainable drainage systems, we can prevent or reduce the damage caused by floods and storms.”
As he stressed the need to tackle fraudulent and unethical behavior that holds back the engineering fraternity, the minister promised government support to the Institute in ensuring that all practicing engineers are certified.
“We have started various initiatives ranging from reviewing the governing regulatory framework, enhancing capacities, supporting joint inspections, establishing a professional scale of fees, enhancing local content in national strategic projects, among others,” he said.
“We will progressively continue to collaborate until our profession gets to a level everybody will be proud of.”
During the convention, the experts deliberated on ways to enhance current practices in order to be in a better position for the future of the engineering profession. For example, it was noted that there is a need to increase the maintenance of projects from once a year to two to three times a year.
Gentil Kangaho, the President and Chairman of Institution of Engineers Rwanda, urged the participants to commit to the country’s development and drive the innovations in the profession.
“Our expertise, knowledge, and passion have the power to revolutionize the infrastructure landscape of our beloved country. We are the ones who design, build, and maintain the physical backbone of society,” Kangaho said.
“From roads that connect communities and facilitate commerce, to sustainable energy systems that power industries and homes, we have the capacity to reshape the very foundations of Rwanda's development.”
Steven Sabiti, IER’s Executive Secretary and CEO said: As engineers, we play a crucial role in driving innovation, designing resilient infrastructure, and implementing sustainable practices. Our profession holds immense potential to address pressing issues facing humanity.”
The President of the Federation of Africa Engineering Organisations, Papias Kazawadi Dedeki, called on the engineers to seize opportunities offered by Rwanda, especially in sectors such as sustainable housing, renewable energy, smart agriculture and urban planning.
“By understanding these opportunities for our members, I believe through the establishment of a coordinated framework we can play significant roles by providing technical expertise and research, policy advocacy, professional development and capacity building, knowledge sharing and collaboration,” he said.
According to the law, One become an engineer once admitted by IER is legally allowed to practice in Rwanda.
The Institution of Engineers Rwanda already has more than registered 3,000 members.