Newly found mass graves raise more questions

Names of victims of Genocide against the Tutsi at Kigali Genocide Memorial. Sam Ngendahimana.

Hardly a week had passed after the official mourning period for victims of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, than four mass graves of more victims were discovered on the outskirts of the city.

As we go to press, the first grave has just been excavated and 207 bodies exhumed and more are expected to be found when the whole exercise is completed.

Local residents have revealed that the remains of over 3,000 people from surrounding areas had not been accounted for and some could be among those exhumed. It is believed that there were at least five mass graves in the neighbourhood.

The discovery of the mass graves after 24 years raises some disturbing questions; why had no one come forward to reveal their existence? Some of those who took part in the killings have completed their sentences and are out free.

Others have even apologised to the families of their victims and been forgiven. But how genuine was their remorse, at least for some? It is very disturbing that every now and then mass graves are discovered of which the now free perpetrators never bothered to reveal to bereaved families so that they can get closure.

This is one major challenge for the National Unity and Reconciliation Commission and the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide (CNLG). They will have to dig deep to come up with remedies. But definitely some very cruel people still live in our midst.


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