ARUSHA - Rwandans living in Tanzania’s Northern town of Arusha will today hold a march as part of activities to commemorate the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsis.
In an interview with The New Times yesterday, the Vice President of the Rwanda Diaspora in Arusha, Noun Bandyandora, said that the walk will involve the Rwandan Diaspora, as well as residents of Arusha town and its outskirts.
“We have invited many people – the old and the young - to join us in this walk. For instance, we shall be joined by about 400 students from four institutions of higher learning,” he said by phone yesterday.
“Banners and T-shirts carrying messages denouncing Genocide and calling upon people to help in the fight against trauma will be available during the march,” he added.
The walk, Bandyandora added, will begin at the Sheikh Amri Abeid stadium, through Arusha’s main road, Uhuru Street and end at the Simba Hall in the Arusha International Conference Centre.
At Simba hall, the commemoration event will be attended by senior officials of both the East African Community and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and a host of Diaspora communities based in Arusha.
Among those lined up to deliver speeches are the ICTR Chief Prosecutor, Hassan Bubacar Jallow, the EAC Deputy Secretary General Alloys Mutabingwa, the Speaker of the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) and the Registrar of the East African Court of Justice.
Meanwhile, Rwandans living in Kenya will also hold several activities in commemorating the event.
According to Rwanda’s High Commissioner to Kenya, George William Kayonga, a memorial event will be take place today at the United Nations in Nairobi (UNON) and a church service will be held at the new Embassy premises.
The day will climax into a candle lighting ceremony that will carry the message; “Even after darkness, there is light in Rwanda.”
On the other hand, eight Ugandan universities in collaboration with AEGIS Students and the Peace and Love Proclaimers from Rwanda, are also scheduled to hold an anti-Genocide walk on April 10 at Uganda Christian University (UCU).
According to chief organizer, Patrick Kihumulo, this walk is aimed at awakening people on Rwandan Genocide and be mindful of acts that might cause Genocide in East Africa or Africa as a whole.
“We have decided to start this annual walk with the intention of exposing what happened in 1994 in Rwanda, as well as sensitizing people on avoiding Genocide in east Africa,” he said.
“We have amalgamated with AEGIS students organization from Rwanda sensitize all students from various universities, secondary and primaries schools, all Ugandans, on the repercussion of Genocide.”
The event which is expected to be presided over by Rwanda’s High Commissioner to Uganda, Frank Mugambage, will attract government officials from Uganda and several activists.