Juverus Nizeyimana, is a one among victims of road accidents. On May 12th, 2018 when he was walking with his wife, a vehicle hit them and left them with serious pain and bone fracture.
The couple was taken to a local hospital after police intervention and later got support from a special guarantee fund (SGF) as compensation.
“I did accident on May 12, 2018 with my wife, we were going on foot and a vehicle hit us, we got police intervention and ‘Imbangukiragutabara’ health vehicle from the hospital, we went to the hospital, I could not hear from anything, and my wife’s arm got fracture, I recovered before my wife and continued to help her at the hospital,”
“After the accident and police intervention, I got to know that the vehicle had not required identifications, I got good news that there is a special guarantee fund (SGF) and this compensated me as life was not easy after the accident,” Nizeyimana said.
He thanks the Government of Rwanda to establish this fund that help victims after experiencing such hurdles.
The special guarantee fund was established by the government of Rwanda in a bid to strengthen social protection and to put in place programs that ensure individuals and communities do not slip into lack due to unpredictable calamities.
It can be considered as one of social protection programs put in place to ensure the rights and well-being of the citizens.
This public institution in the previous years was known as Automobile Guarantee Fund created as an autonomous body in 2002 to compensate victims of road accidents caused by non-insured and non-identified vehicles.
But since December 2011, its mandate was extended to compensate victims of wild animals’ damages in areas that are in close proximity with national parks.
SGF Director General Dr. Joseph Nzabonikuza told The Express News that the extension was endorsed by President Paul Kagame who had received several complaints from local population whose properties had been damaged by animals from protected areas.
Compensation of victims of road accidents caused by non-insured vehicles may be found in few other countries in Africa and beyond.
In Rwanda, the additional aspect of compensating victims of wild animal damages is indeed unique.. “This testifies again how our Government is close to the population and always keen to adequately address different problems affecting people wherever they are arising from” emphasizes the SGF DG.
Dr. Nzabonikuza further explained, SGF compensates claimants based on common practices and guidelines in Rwandan insurance industry. The lodged claims are analyzed and treated on equal footing as all claimants have equal rights to compensation for any eligible damages.
A good number of claimants receive the SGF services every year as evidenced by SGF statistics. From January 2013 to end of August 2017, the SGF compensated 5,189 claims for wild animal’s damages, including cases of crops destroyed, cattle killed as well as number of people killed or injured by animals.
Such cases vary from province to province depending on the escaped wild animals from the parks and the proximity of population properties with protected zones.
Until September 2017, SGF compensated 2,648 cases in Eastern Province, 1548 in Northern Province, 438 in Southern Province, 553 in Western Province and y 2 recent cases, August 2017, that occurred in Kigali City where people killed by crocodiles from River Nyabarongo in Mageragere sector.
The Express News