The Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion (MIGEPROF), say that they didn’t have the support for ladies who were employed by bars, and adding to that, any aid that is available is distributed equally based on those who are in need the most.
This come after the ladies who were among bar attendants in different parts of the country, they lost their jobs which were main sources of means of support for their daily life, because Covid-19 pandemic has affected their lives.
These are ladies who were among bar attendants in different parts of the country, including Musanze district in North Province, Karongi district in East Province, and Huye district in South Province. Some of them have kids to take care of.
They say Covid-19 pandemic has affected their lives, in particular, they lost their jobs which were main sources of means of support for their daily life. They say they cannot afford to pay house rent and food because they don’t have any job. They depend on freelance job, and sometime they don’t find it because there are too many are for that.
One of them said that to get something to eat is difficult, because most of them are unemployed.
“I live here in Musanze, you know the bars are closed because of Covid-2019 pandemic. I was a bar attendant, now we are in difficult periods, money is the issue, to get something to eat is difficult, most of us are unemployed. You can’t even find a temporary job”. One of them said.
Other one said that the consequence they are facing during this Covid-2019 is the poverty. That is why they ask support.
“I was working in a bar, and what I can say about the consequence we are facing during this Covid-19 is the poverty. Some other activities have been reopened but we do not know when the bars will resume. I working as a bar accountant, and with that, I can’t say I could not get something to eat. I could get a tip of at least two thousand Rwandan francs (2000 rwf), and it could be more that that based on the clients we have had, and it was the job I am proud of to be doing. It was the job that makes me happy”. Other one said.
According to owners of bars, said that, this pandemic has caused too much loss, and they do not have enough means to support them.
“In New la Bamba, I was employing 11 workers, but now, I have only one. Of course we do not work. I cannot get money to pay them all. Everyone was paid at least 40,000 rwf. The person in charge of barbecue used to receive 60,000 rwf, barman 50,000rwf and bar attendants 40,000rwf. During the first country lockdown, none of my employees was affect, I kept them, and you can imagine what we consumed every day without working. I can say I almost used what I was having”. One of the Bar owner said.
The Minister of Gender and Family Promotion (MGEPROF), Prof. Bayisenge Jeannette say that they didn’t have the support for ladies who were employed by bars, and adding to that, any aid that is available is distributed equally based on those who are in need the most.
He says” when it comes to young girls and women, who were indeed facing poverty and development issues before the pandemic, you can notice there are a lot of many challenges. It is difficult to say that there is a project in place or program that came to support girls or women that were bar attendants. As all institutions in charge are working hard towards addressing this issue, we are not sit down! While all these plans are still being implemented, the message I have to pass is addressed to all Rwandan family in general, is to continue to protect themselves against Covid-2019 pandemic. Therefore, it is not good for them to be discouraged, to misbehave because doing that is not a solution to the problems; it can led to dangerous condition. Those little things you get for short time, let’s say if someone helps you with five or two thousand Rwandan francs, you can get unexpected pregnancy which can make the life more difficult for lifetime”. Minister Prof. Bayisenge said.
Since the bar attendant ladies do not have associations to bring them together, it is a challenge for the supports and aid to reach to them, they live like all other Rwandans. It can be difficult to get a particular aid for them, and they can be a burden for the government in case they start selling themselves as prostitutes, giving birth or contacted sexual transmitted diseases (STD).
Story by Adelphine UWONKUNDA