The former correspondent of the extremist Radio Television Libre des Mille Collines (RTLM), and proprietor of the vernacular publication, Kamarampaka, has appealed a life sentence that was handed down to him last month by a Gacaca Court in Kisimigara Sector, Nyarugenge District.
Bernard Hategikimana Mukingo was convicted on charges of inciting killing of Tutsis during the 1994 Genocide.
The court heard that Mukingo used his publications to incite the mass killings.
Presenting his appeal on Monday, Mukingo denied all the charges saying that he was used by the former government to publish the inciting articles.
“I published the articles because I was forced by the ruling party-MRND (National Republican Movement for Democracy and Development) government to do so, it wasn’t my intention,” he argued.
The court heard that in one of his articles, Mukingo wrote that ‘Hutus are going to be wiped out from the face of the earth if they do not kill Tutsis before”.
“Tutsis are not human beings; they rape women, kill people… so the Hutus should be aware of those animals,” his publication reads.
Mukingo bewildered court when he said that he should be rewarded for writing articles that criticized the killings.
Speaking to The New Times, Genocide scholar Tom Ndahiro, said that Mukingo is a top genocide suspect owing to the role played by his publications.
“The court shouldn’t be wasting a lot of time listening to the appeal of such a remorseless person because what he did is on record” he stressed.
He added that, Mukingo asking to be rewarded is an insult and a mockery to the survivors. Mukingo was also convicted of manning a notorious roadblock in a Kigali neighbourhood where several Tutsis were killed.
The hearing was adjourned until today when the court will pronounce itself on the appeal.