Remains of thousands of victims of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi who were buried in several places in Nyanza District are being exhumed in order to be given a decent burial.
Authorities in the district say an estimated 15, 000 remains are set to be reburied at a new memorial site in Rwesero, on the outskirt of Nyanza town.
The bodies will be exhumed from ‘makeshift’ memorials across Busasamana Sector and neighbouring areas, according to authorities.
The exercise has already started with the Nyanza memorial at Nyanza stadium. Between 12, 000 and 13, 000 victims are believed to have been buried there. The re-burial is set for May 3.
The district mayor, Abdallah Murenzi, told The New Times that the bodies had been lying in unsafe sites and needed to be moved.
Murenzi said some victims had been buried in plastic sheets moments after the 1994 Genocide was stopped.
“By reburying them, we are offering the victims the respect they deserve,” Murenzi said.
Meanwhile, activities to build a new, ‘befitting’ memorial site in the district are in the final stages. Workers on the site built in Rwesero cell, Busasamana Sector are putting final touches on the memorial with the installation of shelves that will accommodate caskets containing the remains of victims. Works on painting, cleaning of the floor and the garden are also underway.
The memorial will cost about Rwf300 million upon completion, according to authorities.
It will comprise mainly three section which include the underground area for burial and the upper floor where visitors will be laying wreaths and paying their tributes in honour of the victims.
The second wing will also comprise a wall inscribed with names of the victims interred there.
The third section will comprise the history materials as well as other elements explaining the Genocide, its preparation, execution and its aftermath. It will also contain clothes of victims and their other belongings, plus some tools that were used to murder them, according to officials.