Rwanda has received funding that will enable construction of feeder roads using Do-nou Technology, an ancient Japanese technique that requires only bags, soil and gravel.

‘Do-nou’ is a Japanese word meaning wrapping soil in a gunny bag. The road construction technology, used over 100 years ago in Japan, is a soil reinforcement technique using geotextile materials preferably gunny bags in civil engineering construction.

On Thursday, the Government of Japan signed a grant contract with Community Road Empowerment (CORE), to provide $294,992 for implementing a project named “Sustainable Youth Employment through Road Improvement taking Locally Available Material Based Approach”The project will be implemented in four districts (Rulindo, Gakenke, Nyamasheke and Rusizi) in the next 12 months and at least 12 districts will be reached in the next three years.

“Japan will fund this project for the next three years with four districts benefiting each year. The biggest benefits is to create jobs for youth, rural connectivity using very cheap and available materials,” Japan ambassador to Rwanda Takayuki Mayishita said at the signing ceremony.

At least 168 youths will be employed to train other 55000 rural youths in using the Do-nou Technology to construct between three to 10kilometer road networks in each district benefiting over 16000 residents countrywide annually.

“Besides the project providing skills in unpaved road maintenance using Do-nou technology for youth groups, it will encourage them to set up companies that will play a role in the labour market to reduce youth unemployment,” said Kei Nakajima, project manager of CORE.

Engineer Jacob Kiplagat, who is in charge of training the youth in using the technology, said that learning this technology takes a short time.

“It takes five days or a week to train someone and there is no need for an education qualification to learn how to use this technology.

The feeder roads will be constructed within the national road networks master plan,” Kiplagat said.Rwanda increased domestically financed development projects expenditure by Rwf26.2 billion from Rwf434 billion in 2016/17 to Rwf460.2 billion in 2017/18 budgets.

Do-nou Technology, a brain child of Prof. M. Kimura, Kyoto University Graduate school of Engineering.

This Technology is applied in the construction of dam embankments, road maintenance, culvert and bridge construction, flood routing dykes, footpaths in flooded areas, building foundations and retaining walls.

So far this method of constructing feeder roads has been implemented in 25 countries and currently only applied in Kenya among Africa countries

Source: KT Press