The Central African Republic (CAR) Speaker of Parliament, Kalim Mekasou, has said that Rwanda's success in unifying and reconciling citizens after the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi presents the best approach to building unified and peaceful African continent.
The Speaker was, yesterday, speaking in the capital Bangui where he joined Rwandan peacekeepers serving under United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in CAR (MINUSCA) in the 23rd commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi.
It was also attended by the Prime Minister of CAR, Simplice Sarandji.
During the event that was observed with a moment of silence in honour of the over one million Tutsis who were brutally massacred 23 years ago, and laying of wreath, Mekasou said; “What happened in Rwanda should never happen again anywhere in the world. Today, the entire continent joins Rwanda in mourning the victims for the Genocide.”
“These dates remind us how the international community abandoned Rwanda; I am grateful to President Paul Kagame for the efforts he has invested in reuniting people of Rwanda, rebuilding the country and contributing tremendously to restoration of people across the world,” Mr. Mekasou said.
He particularly thanked Rwanda for her efforts in restoring safety and peace in CAR.
Currently, Rwanda maintains about 450 police and over 800 troops in Central African Republic, who are also in charge of the protection of top government officials, among other peacekeeping duties.
The Speaker noted that CAR is much interested in learning from the current Rwanda’s best practices to build a united and prosperous country.
The commemoration event was also marked by lighting a memorial flame and laying wreaths in honor of the victims of the Genocide and testimonies from those that experienced the Genocide.
The event was attended by over 1300 people including Rwandan police, military, correctional officers serving in MINUSCA, Rwandans and friends of Rwanda.
Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Barthelemy Rugwizangoga spoke at length about the history of the Genocide, how it was planned, executed, stopped, its effects and Rwanda's resurrection from the ashes.
“In just 100 days, over a million Tutsis were systematically massacred while the world was watching. It was the Rwanda Patriotic Army that stopped it. Today, Rwanda is much focused ensuring the best welfare of every citizen,” said ACP Rugwizangoga.
Ralland Kwasi, who spoke on behalf of friends of Rwanda, said he came to Rwanda immediately after the Genocide and understands well the brutality used in the Genocide.
“What I saw in Rwanda was very traumatizing. No country should ever take this path ever again. Thanks to everyone who took part in stopping the Genocide against the Tutsi. Today Rwanda is referred to as a model country in developing fast; Africa and the world should emulate Rwanda,” Kwasi said.