E. Province honours staff slain during Genocide against Tutsi

The Eastern Province paid tribute to former staff that perished during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
Two boys light candles during the 20th commemoration of the Genocide against Tutsi. Youth today have pledged to sustain a unified Rwanda. File.
Two boys light candles during the 20th commemoration of the Genocide against Tutsi. Youth today have pledged to sustain a unified Rwanda. File.

The Eastern Province paid tribute to former staff that perished during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

A delegation of the provincial staff, district mayors, senators and legislators laid wreaths on Kigabiro mass grave in Rwamagana District, where over 80,000 victims were buried.

Addressing hundreds of mourners, Odette Uwamariya, the Governor of the Province, called on residents to help identify the victims who were killed during the Genocide.

She also pledged continued provincial support to the widows and orphans.

“It’s the third time we are commemorating the fallen staff. Only 56 victims were identified, 19 of whom worked within administrative offices, but I am sure the number of victims is higher than what we have,” she said during the function held over the weekend.

The Governor emphasised that it was the obligation of workers and the whole society to empower Genocide survivors.

“The survivors need our support …they were handicapped physically, psychologically, and economically. The Province needs to help them get back on their feet.

Charles Kamanda, a former Member of Parliament and the only staff who survived the Genocide in the former Kibungo prefecture, reminded mourners that remembering was essential for a post-Genocide society.

“We were tortured by colleagues, constantly harassed before full scale massacres begun. It is thus important that our children understand well, what caused the Genocide before they can say ‘Never Again’. Remembering victims is all about that,” he said.

Kamanda further castigated the genocidal regime that killed instead of protecting its people.

“It is a shame that the workers we are remembering were killed by the government they served,” Kamanda said.

Most of those buried at Kigabiro cemetery in Rwamagana town, were killed in and around the existing churches and local administration offices where they had sought refuge.

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