Fear gripped a small village in Rwamagana District on Wednesday morning, after a resident set himself ablaze in a family house, reportedly after killing his wife identified as Jeanette Kayitesi.
The incident occurred in Biraro Village, Cyanya Cell, just about 100 metres from Kigabiro Sector offices.
The man, identified as Seth Munyaneza, was 45 years old while the wife, who worked as a tailor, was 35.
They had two children, the eldest studying in primary two.
Neighbours believe that Munyaneza could have killed his wife last night before he locked himself in the house and setting himself ablaze. He did this after sending the couple’s children to school.
Different witness accounts point to conflicts in this family as the cause of the two deaths, because, apparently, the couple had even quarrelled the previous night.
Abdul Karim Niyigaba is their neighbour who says he is the one who came to the house after he saw it in flames at a few minutes past 7:00.
When he peeped inside, he saw people were inside the house, which was by now engulfed by the inferno. He called sector officials who called police firefighters.
He said he decided to come to the house because Munyaneza was his friend, but admits he was not close enough to the family to establish the reason behind the grisly incident.
Paid school fees
Earlier on Wednesday, Munyaneza had called Cyprien Habineza, the headmaster at “Le Pigeonnier” primary school, where the estranged couple’s children studied, asking if he could pass by him to collect school fees for the eldest child.
Speaking to The New Times, the headmaster said Munyaneza called to ask him to pass by home to get the fees, claiming he would not be able to deposit the money to the bank.
When the head teacher arrived, Munyaneza gave him Rwf14,000 on top of the Rwf10,000 he had previously paid.
“Clearly it showed someone who was ready for what was to happen. He actually asked me if the children could stay at school for lunch, claiming that both he and the wife would not be around during the day,” said Habineza.
Marie Odette Mukamuligo, the leader of Biraro village, said she only learned that the family was having conflicts on Friday last week when they were called by neighbours to mediate.
However, she thought they had solved the couple’s differences.
Rwamagana District Mayor, Rajab Mbonyumuvunyi, said Rwanda Investigation Bureau has been to the scene of crime to carry out further investigation which he said will inform subsequent action.