The 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Kimihurura sector, Gasabo District was severe because it was spearheaded by former soldiers of the Republican Guard, survivors have said.
They were speaking at commemoration event this week.
The event was preceded by a Walk to Remember from Kigali Business Centre (KBC) to Institut de Formation Apostolique de Kimihurura (IFAK).
It drew residents from different villages of the sector.
Genocide survivors said memories of what they went through were still fresh but their spirits remain strong.
Marthe Mukakarangwa, a survivor who lived in Kimihurura during the Genocide, in her testimony, said former soldiers of the Republican guard tortured many of them to death.
“April 17, 1994 has stuck in our memories, this was when soldiers of the Republican guard led us out of our homes. They gathered all Tutsi together and beat us using clubs. We were surrounded by the Interahamwe militia whose job was to prevent us from escaping,” Mukakarangwa recalled.
“I had a one-week old baby they killed him, arguing he will avenge if he was left alive.”
Godfroid Mutabazi commonly known as Museveni, another survivor said among 71 people who were gathered at IFAK, he is the only survivor.
“Before the Genocide, I lived next to Republican guards’ camp, it was hard for me to flee as we were surrounded, but a friend of mine helped me escape to this school (IFAK), where I joined a number of Tutsi seeking refuge. But later a group of soldiers with interahamwe militia attacked the school; they cut off my arm, made sporadic shooting at the school but luckily I survived under dead bodies,” Museveni explained.
MP Theoneste Karenzi said it was due to bad leadership that soldiers mandated to protect people played an active role in the Genocide.
Karenzi urged Rwandans to learn about Rwanda’s history, foster unity and reconciliation in the society.
Ambassador Joseph Nsengimana who addressed the gathering, called for fight against genocide ideology and denial, condemning the past government for orchestrating the Genocide.
He also urged parents to teach love and values to children.
“There is need for love between families to ensure peaceful co-existence and sustainable peace in the country,” Nsengimana said.
Figures indicate that 370 people were killed in Kimihurura during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.