Residents refuse to vacate houses meant for Genocide survivors

  WESTERN PROVINCE RUBAVU — People said to have wrongfully occupied houses meant for Genocide survivors in Rugerero sector, Rubavu district have refused to vacate them.

WESTERN PROVINCE

RUBAVU — People said to have wrongfully occupied houses meant for Genocide survivors in Rugerero sector, Rubavu district have refused to vacate them.

A group of angry genocide survivors recently asked the district to intervene in the evacuation of people occupying about 50 houses. The houses can accommodate about 100 families.

According Jerome Ndikubwabo one of the survivors in the sector, the fifty houses were constructed by FARG for the 1994 survivors but under unclear circumstances they were given to other people.

"The houses were constructed for us. After their completion, there developed mis-understandings on who would occupy them which led them to remain vacant as the sector authority delayed the process of identifying the right people to occupy them," Ndikubwabo explained.

In the process, he said the former Kanzarwe district currently Rubavu district provisionally used 12 of the houses to accommodate homeless Rwandan returnees from DRC, who had settled at the district at the time.

"Other people also continued to occupy the remaining houses with the permission of sector leaders on the understanding that they were there on temporary terms as they looked for their own. They explained to them the houses belonged to the survivors, even FARG knew about their temporary occupancy," he asserted.

Ndikubwabo noted the occupants have since refused to vacate the houses and that changes in the local leader’s administration complicated the matter. And the group claims to have acquired the houses through proper channels.

Jean Pierre Semuzi the current Rugerero sector official in charge of welfare confirmed the claims, saying the sector could not easily identify the right people to occupy the houses since they did not have lists of the survivors who were the intended beneficiaries.

"The houses were constructed some time back by former Rubavu commune before most of us were elected leaders. Lists were made of the survivors to get the houses. It has been however difficult for the current sector authority to trace these people because we lacked the original lists indicating the right survivors to get the houses," he explained.

He however said the issue would be solved soon since the district had found the original lists of names meant to get the houses.

"These houses were constructed a couple of years ago by former Rubavu commune whose documents were all transferred to the current Rubavu district headquarters. It’s fortunate that the necessary documents have been found and soon the right occupants will be identified," he said.

Semuzi said deceased survivors will have their houses given to their children.

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