It's exciting to hear that someone else applied so close to ours!
Have you had any news at all from Damascus?? This is such a long hard wait!! All they asked us for was the RPRF... we're trying to figure out what this means!?! On the website it says that when the visa is ready they will ask for final payment and after calling CIC they have told me the same thing, but that seems oddly quick... not that I would complain though!
We paid the right of permanent residence fee at the beginning, with the other fees, so they never contacted us about this. I'm not sure but I guess that asking for the RPRF and then issuing the visa quickly after that is usually for other classes, like skilled workers. That happened to me when my visa was ready to be issued and I was in the skilled workers class. But for family class sponsorships I don't think this would be the case, since we already had the option to pay all the fees upfront.
I haven't heard anything from themselves, but I sent them an email a month ago asking for my file number, which they replied after 2-3 days and gave us the file number.
Anyways, its good to know they have started looking and working on the April files.
Hope you see your husband very soon