Remains of over 2,500 Genocide victims found

Remains of some 2,500 Genocide victims have been discovered buried at Rebero Memorial site, the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide has said.
Staff of the Prime Minister’s office in a Walk To Remember in honour of the victims of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi yesterday. At least 2,500 more remains of victims have been....
Staff of the Prime Minister’s office in a Walk To Remember in honour of the victims of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi yesterday. At least 2,500 more remains of victims have been....

Remains of some 2,500 Genocide victims have been discovered buried at Rebero Memorial site, the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide has said.

The number includes victims from Gokondo and Nyamirambo, among other city suburbs, CNLG said in a report done with support of the National Consultative Forum for Political Organisations (NFPO), between January and March.

Identities

The Executive Secretary of NFPO, Anicet Kayigema, said with the findings, NFPO, in collaboration with CNLG and other stakeholders, are working together to establish the names of the victims.

“Previously, our figures indicated that 14,000 remains lay interred at this memorial site, but the latest information indicate that last year, remains of 1,000 persons were discovered to have been killed and buried there, while this year, 2,500 have been confirmed there as well,” said Kayigema.

He said this figure will be included on the list of those who lost their lives during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi and buried at the memorial.

The Rebero memorial site is a special  symbol of politicians slain in 1994.

Some of the politicians buried at the site include Jean de la Croix Rutaremara, Charles Kayiranga, Venatie Kabageni, Andre Kameya and Landouard Ndasingwa, commonly known as Lando, who were all members of the Liberal Party.

Others are Jean Baptiste Mushimiyimana, who belonged to Social Democratic Party, Frederic Nzamurambaho, Faustin Rucogoza (MDR), as well as Felicien Ngago and Joseph Kavaruganda.

The late politicians are remembered for their commitment in putting pressure to the then government of Juvenal Habyarimana to stop sectarianism against the Tutsi and promote peace and reconciliation as well as engage in talks with the opposition.

The late Agatha Uwiringiyimana, the former prime minister, is also among the senior politicians murdered at the time.

She is buried at the National Heroes Mausoleum in Remera, Kigali.

Discovering remains


Hundreds of survivors are still haunted by the fact that the remains of their loved ones were never found.

However, time and again, remains are discovered across the country and beyond. In 2009, remains of more than 900 victims were discovered in Tanzania, where authorities have since mooted the idea of constructing a Genocide memorial centre.

Hundreds of other remains of the victims of the pogrom have been discovered in the country.

During the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, many of those killed had their identification documents destroyed in an apparent effort to conceal the Genocide.

Many victims had their bodies mutilated beyond recognition or dumped into Kagera River to be washed away by water currents to Uganda and Tanzania.

Way forward


During the interview, Kayigema said their forum has put in place measures to ensure that future leaders, regardless of their political inclinations, are able to work for the betterment of the citizens and the development of the country.

Among other measures, he said that the forum developed a mechanism through which the young generations, through their respective political parties, undergo civic education to prepare them for leadership at an early stage.

Today, the last day of the official commemoration week, will see politicians hold a special ceremony at Rebero memorial site to honour their colleagues who were killed during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Youth leaders are expected to lead the ceremony.

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