Two fatal incidents took place Thursday evening: an unidentified man hurled a grenade at two guards manning the gate to Kigali Memorial Centre that killed one instantly and injured the other; and the second incident saw a driver ram his vehicle into a Genocide Commemoration student procession near the Kigali Institute of Management, killing one student and injuring four others.
The police are still investigating these incidents, and in the car-ramming one they want to determine whether there was premeditation, or it was just an accident like the driver-perpetrator claims.
The Gisozi one is a dastardly attack on everything that is decent, and The New Times strongly condemns this act and the thinking behind it, whether it was intended just to kill the guards as the police suggest, or was meant to further desecrate the memories of some of the people who were even then being given a decent burial inside the memorial site walls.
The grenade-throwing is provocative; it is infuriating; it is shocking. But Rwandans have been through worse, and have managed to claw their way back to sanity. Police Commissioner General Andrew Rwigamba has called on the people to remain calm as the police does its work, and it is better to heed his advice.
The people behind such provocative acts have a long agenda, part of which would like to see any efforts at reconciling and unifying all Rwandans scuttled.
Just as we are using the Genocide commemoration as a reminder to steer clear of all divisive acts that may fuel a repeat of 1994, we should now look at such provocative actions like the Gisozi grenade attack as an indication that the war against genocide ideology is far from won, and triple efforts in educating, and talking, and understanding.
To be sure, such an attack should instead act as a uniting and galvanising force for citizens not to take genocide deniers and revisionists for granted, but rather work harder at preaching and bringing harmony amongst communities so that hate is brought down to a minimum.
This government is fighting hate with flowers of peace. There is no reason to discontinue this approach.