World bears collective guilt for Genocide – AU chief
The Chairperson of the AU has said that the guilt on the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda squarely lies not only on the perpetrators but the world in its entirely for doing nothing to stop it.
Dr Jean Ping said this during an event held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia bringing together staff members at the AU headquarters, Ethiopians in General and the Rwandan community to mark the 18th commemoration of the Genocide against the Tutsi.
“Our commemoration today is yet another opportunity to remind ourselves about Rwanda’s unfortunate recent past when, within a period of a hundred days, an estimated one million people were brutally and needlessly killed in one of the fastest and systematic genocide known to history.”
“There was guilt not only on the perpetrators but also on all of us who stood by and did nothing.”
Ping noted that the 18th commemoration is also a worthy contribution to national healing and reconciliation in Rwanda, so as to ensure that the harmful grief experienced is not passed down to future generations.
During the January 2011 AU summit, African leaders dedicated 2012 as the year of shared values in Africa.
“This was their novel way of bringing to light the importance of shared values in consolidating Africa’s integration, the shared values which include human rights promotion and protection,” Dr. Ping.
He said commemoration events provided platform for Africans to reiterate commitment to ensure that no more genocide occurs on the continent “now or in the future.”
During the event, Prof. Joseph Nsengimana, Rwanda’s Ambassador to Ethiopia, highlighted that through commemoration, Rwandans are able learn to forgive those who sincerely seek to be forgiven and be reconciled with each other.
“But this helps us to reflect and take seriously the meaning of “dignity”.
Contact email: james.karuhanga[at]newtimes.co.rw