Genocide perpetrators build houses for survivors

KAMONYI – In a move hailed as a great step toward unity and reconciliation, Genocide perpetrators in Kamonyi district last week joined hands to build for survivors whose houses were destroyed during the genocide in Gacurabwenge sector.
Pelagie Nirere (R), gets a hug of peace from the mother of those who destroyed her house during the genocide as others look on. (Photo: D. Sabiiti)
Pelagie Nirere (R), gets a hug of peace from the mother of those who destroyed her house during the genocide as others look on. (Photo: D. Sabiiti)

KAMONYI – In a move hailed as a great step toward unity and reconciliation, Genocide perpetrators in Kamonyi district last week joined hands to build for survivors whose houses were destroyed during the genocide in Gacurabwenge sector.

“It is important to support genocide survivors after receiving their forgiveness. We are ready to work together for harmonious co-existence,” Illdephonse Iyamuremye, one of the self confessed perpetrators grouped under Turubake Association said.

So far 33 houses have been constructed through the healing, unity and reconciliation process initiated by the Pilgrim Centre for Healing and Reconciliation Ministries (PCHRM) operating in Kamonyi district.

Over 120 residents in Nkingo village, Gacurabwenge sector have been brought together through prayers and Bible teachings.

Both survivors and perpetrators have learnt to live and work together, Pastor Charles Twagirimana, a PCHRM official said.

One of the survivors, Pelagie Nirere, 50, a widow said, “I have forgiven nine people in the interest of unity and reconciliation. It relieves the heart and it restores peace.”
She added that though she still faces traumatic experiences, with support it can reduce.

Pastor Paul Ndahigwa, the Director of PCHRM, urged the residents to continue working together and join hands to fight genocide ideology and shun ethnic divisionism.

Both survivors and perpetrators hold meeting and prayer sessions together, in which they receive briefing on unity and reconciliation measures- which has resulted in 22 self confessed genocide convicts reuniting with families of genocide victims.

The group also has initiated income generating activities as part of the wider efforts to forge lasting unity.

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