Genocide: Medics told to honour ethics to save life

Medics who participated in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi have been criticised for breaching their professional code of conduct.

Medics who participated in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi have been criticised for breaching their professional code of conduct.

Mourners made the condemnation, on Saturday, at Kabutare Hospital in Huye District as the medical facility remembered its former employees, patients and caregivers who were killed during the Genocide.

Margaret Tangishaka, a representative of families that lost their relatives at Kabutare Hospital, remembered how nurses took part in the killings.

She said some students and teachers from GS Officiel de Butare, where she studied, were a ‘mobile group’ used in the killings in the area.

The hospital director, Dr Saleh Niyonzima, said medics who took part in the Genocide are to blame.

“We criticise doctors who conspired against or killed Tutsi during the Genocide. It is a pity that doctors, nurses who know the value of life and would take care of patients acted otherwise,” he said.

Pélagie Mukamwezi, of Ngoma Sector, and only survivor in a family of 10, said her survival was difficult as she escaped death several times and was neglected by people who would have cared for her, including doctors.

“I was stabbed in the breast, the neck and rib and I bled for long. My breast swell with deep wounds, tissues were getting rotten. When I reached Kabutare Hospital, I saw a certain Dr Iraguha and I asked him to treat me and my little sister Theodethe Mukamurangwa, who was deeply cut in the head and could not move. The doctor, realising our suffering, told me to wait for ‘our relatives’ to treat us, saying they were near. It hurt me,” Mukamwezi narrated.

Her sister later died at the hospital.

Mukamwezi was rescued by RPA soldiers after reaching Huye.

She survived with injuries in the leg and she walks on crutches.

Huye mayor Eugene Kayiranga Muzuka faulted medics who participated in the killing of patients whose lives they were supposed to save.

He said survivors’ testimonies would help fight Genocide deniers who want to return the country back to the wrong path.

Survivors asked that commemoration in Ecole Agronomique et Veternaire de Kabutare (EAVK), Ecole de Gatagara (for students with disabilities) in Huye and Kabutare Hospital be combined to facilitate a smooth sharing of Genocide history.

They said killings in the three areas had a lot of commonalities.

Those entities are in the same Kabutare Village. Mayor Muzuka said the request is valid.

Twenty-one people are documented to have been killed at Kabutare Hospital during the Genocide against the Tutsi.

Dr Niyonzima called on Genocide perpetrators to volunteer information which can help in the location of other victims to give them a decent burial.

Kabutare Hospital collected Rwf500,000 for the renovation of vulnerable survivor Damascene Nyirinkwaya’s dilapidated house in Muyogoro Cell of Huye Sector.

Nyirinkwayan also suffers from paralysis.