Gakenke Mayor cleared of Genocide charges

HUYE – The Mayor of Gakenke district who had been accused of Genocide charges at the National University of Rwanda (NUR), was yesterday declared not guilty by Gacaca Court in Ngoma Sector, Huye district. Pierre Damien Hakizayezu, was cleared of charges including complicity in Genocide and inciting students to commit Genocide at NUR, while in his final year at the university, during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
Gakenke Mayor Pierre Damien Hakizayezu (L) being congratulated after clearing him of Genocide charges. (Photo: P. Ntambara)
Gakenke Mayor Pierre Damien Hakizayezu (L) being congratulated after clearing him of Genocide charges. (Photo: P. Ntambara)

HUYE – The Mayor of Gakenke district who had been accused of Genocide charges at the National University of Rwanda (NUR), was yesterday declared not guilty by Gacaca Court in Ngoma Sector, Huye district.

Pierre Damien Hakizayezu, was cleared of charges including complicity in Genocide and inciting students to commit Genocide at NUR, while in his final year at the university, during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Court presided over by Jean Baptiste Ndahumba, ruled that the allegations against Hakizayezu could not be substantiated. Court in its ruling noted that the defendant cooperated with the court by revealing information about the killings at the university.

During the trial, Hakizayezu who belonged to the MRND political party vehemently denied any role in the Genocide.

“I never hated Tutsi students while at the university, we continued to live together even during the turbulent times when ethnic tension was rife at the university campus,” he told court on Wednesday.

Earlier on the same day, the Gacaca court heard the testimony from Gasabo district Mayor Claudine Nyinawagaga, who was a student at the university before the Genocide.

In her testimony, Nyinawagaga said Hakizayezu was always friendly and that she did not know of his involvement in Genocide.

“He remained close to us even when the political climate at the university had taken an ethnic turn,” she told court earlier on.

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