Bugesera/Rwamagana - As the commemoration week concluded, yesterday, residents of Nyamata in Bugesera District paid respects to Genocide victims massacred in Nyamata Parish Church.
Thousands of mourners flocked to the former church – currently a memorial site - and laid banquets of flowers at the cemetery.
The remains of 42 victims who were also recovered recently were accorded a decent burial.
Nyamata memorial site is home to over 45,000 victims.
Over 65,000 victims are buried at various memorial centres in Ntarama, Gashora, Ruhuha and Nyamata sectors.
Bugesera District Mayor, Louis Rwagaju, emphasised the importance of commemoration.
“The history of Genocide in Bugesera can be traced way before 1994...massacre and genocide drills were first conducted in Bugesera. The history is so ugly that I don’t need to repeat it,” he said.
The Mayor called for support to Genocide survivors who, he said, were recovering from the horrible crimes they were subjected to, by the genocidal regime.
“It was not easy after what the Tutsi went through. The survivors you see here are courageous and it is our duty to give them all the support.”
Emmanuel Nsengimana, a survivor, who was nine years old in 1994, said that the Genocide left the Tutsi devastated.
He intimated that at one point, he had given up on life, because he never saw any chance of survival.
“I was a young boy during the Genocide, I witnessed my parents and relatives die. During the Genocide and few years after, I never thought I needed to live anymore...I am, however, happy that I have managed to push on against all odds,” he said.
MP Francis Kaboneka, who joined Nyamata residents to mark the event, advised survivors not to despair, but work hard. He noted that the genocidaires must be choking with shame and regret because their goal to exterminate the Tutsi was not achieved.
‘It is indeed important you don’t resign, but continue to work hard, to rebuild yourselves and the nation. What punishes the genocidaires is seeing you continue to prosper,” he said.