Rwandan government accused of Manipulating poverty data to improve tarnished image

The data released in September showed that the poverty rate in Rwanda fell by 6 percentage points between 2011 and 2014, to 39 percent. The Integrated Household Living Conditions Survey measures things like staple foods, caloric consumption, incomes and more to get a picture of the lives of Rwandans.

As Murangwa indicated, the latest edition of the survey included changes to the minimum standards set for goods consumed by households. In addition to maize, cassava and sorghum quantities increased, while sweet potato, Irish potato and banana quantities fell.


According to France 24‘s sources, the changes were made by the Rwandan government after the survey was complete. They say Oxford Policy Management, the group that carried out the survey, disagreed with changes proposed by the government, but they were still made after the data was handed over to Rwanda. Those subtle changes distort the ability to compare 2011 against 2014 because the criteria for poverty changed, critics say.

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