Family, colleagues and friends are mourning the sudden demise of Senator Jean de Dieu Mucyo.
Mucyo, 55, collapsed and died at Parliament Building yesterday.
Various mourners described Mucyo as a soft spoken man who was a hard worker, while relatives said he was a loving caring father.
He was a longstanding cadre of Rwanda Patriotic Front and one of the renowned Rwandan lawyers.
The late is survived by a wife and four children; one daughter and three sons.
In a brief statement, released yesterday, Senate president Bernard Makuza expressed deep condolences to the family of the deceased senator, adding that his abrupt death left a big void in the Senate.
“It is with heavy heart and great sorrow that the Senate of Rwanda announces that Jean de Dieu Mucyo has passed on this October 3, 2016, in the morning as the result of stairway fall in the senate building; our thoughts are with the family, May his Soul rest in Peace,” reads the statement.
Senator Mucyo was a member of the senatorial Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs.
According to Senator Michel Rugema, the committee chairperson, Mucyo will be remembered for the outstanding expertise he rendered to the committee shortly after he joined the Senate in 2015.
“It was a great shock learning about the death of one of our own, Senator Mucyo, and the circumstances under which he died, he was an exemplary person, he was very useful to the committee which benefitted a lot from his experience,” Rugema said.
“We stand with his family in this time of grief and we will try to provide our support as much as we can. We have lost a good friend, colleague and, to some, he was a big member of the family. He will be greatly missed.”
Vital Ntagungira, another former colleague at the National Public Prosecution Authority and close friend who was his special advisor, recalled that Mucyo was so instrumental in the justice sector during the drafting of the Constitution and other important laws.
“He was there during hard times, a lot of reforms in laws were guided by him. He was a good manager, very prudent, a good listener, he was never rude against his employees, it was a privilege for me to have worked with him,” Ntagungira said, recalling that they worked together in the special committee that probed the role of French government in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
Lambert Mucyo, a brother of the late, who spoke on behalf of the family, said the deceased senator was a straight-forward man who was an advocate of truth and justice for his country and a loving husband, father and a relative to many.
“It is such a huge loss for us in the family, he has gone too soon. We will miss him greatly, we will miss a lot of his character like the fact that he was a focused person who always thrived and struggled for peace and justice,” he told The New Times.
The late Mucyo joined Senate last year after leaving the National Commission for fight against Genocide (CNLG), where he served as executive secretary.
Prior to his CNLG stewardship. the seasoned lawyer had served as a minister for justice, prosecutor-general and had a long military career behind him. He retired from the army at the rank of captain.
Detail of funeral arrangements were not announced by press time, as family members were awaiting relatives and friends who will be travelling from abroad.
A vigil for the deceased is being held at his residence in Nyamirambo Sector, Nyarugenge District.