As part of activities to mark the 20th anniversary of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, the Muslim communities in the City of Kigali (CoK) and Rubavu District yesterday paid tribute to victims at Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre.
“We came here to pay respects to those who lost their lives during the Genocide as well as show solidarity with survivors,” said Al-Hajji Isaac Munyakazi, the coordinator of the association during a visit to the memorial.
He also pointed out that it’s important for parents to not only be open up about the Genocide but also encourage their children to visit such memorial sites, as a way of preventing a similar occurrence in the future.
Munyakazi also urged religious leaders to partner with government to bring about peace , unity and development, adding that religious leaders in the past abandoned this role.
“It’s unfortunate that some religious groups played a part in the Genocide. Instead of preaching love, they preached hatred,” he said.
He also called upon victims and perpetrators of the Genocide to forgive and reconcile with each other if progress is to be realised.
Sheikh Djuma Kibata, the chairperson former pilgrims from Rubavu, also encouraged families that lost loved ones to be strong and focus on rebuilding themselves.
“The future is bright for survivors and the rest of Rwandans. We should not continue to despair,” he said.
The group later donated about Rwf1 million to a family of survivors in Masaka Sector, Kicukiro District.