Accessibility links

Rwandans Unhappy About Alleged Assassination Of Genocide Survivors


Rwandans are expressing outrage after seven survivors of the country's genocide were reportedly killed this year. They are calling on President Paul Kagame's government to set up a commission of inquiry to investigate the crime and punish the perpetrators. IBUKA, which is the organization of the survivors of Rwanda's 1994 genocide, says there seems to be an orchestrated attempt to kill survivals. John Bosco Gasasira is the editor of the Umuvugizi Independent Newspaper in Rwanda. He tells reporter Peter Clottey from the capital, Kigali that the government is not doing enough to protect the genocide survivors.

"IBUKA is a genocide survivors' association and back here at home in Rwanda, the genocide survivors are experiencing lots of problems of insecurity most especially in up country and in some villages. In the Kigali suburbs we found out that in just a short period this year more than seven genocide survivors have been killed. They are being assassinated in one way or another," Gasasira pointed out.

He said the government has not done enough to protect genocide survivors.

"As you know RPF (Rwanda Patriotic Front) as the ruling party and the government are credited for stopping genocide, but on another side they are criticized for failing to protect the security of genocide survivors. When I caught the minister for internal affairs who was advising genocide survivors last year, saying that they should sleep earlier and walk in groups, as if they don't have rights. If it were to be in another country, this minister could have been forced to resign straight away. So, really their security is not good and the measures of the government is not all that good," he said.

Gasasira said genocide survivors are powerless to protect themselves with the ongoing attempt to kill them.

"IBUKA just publicly campaign about what is going on, but it has no any other solution of stopping the killings. It behooves the government of Rwanda, which has to install critical measures and the way it needs to stopping genocide and installing the security of genocide survivors. But IBUKA is handicapped, it can't protects its people apart from going in the open and talking about the killings, but it has not measures of stopping them," Gasasira noted.

He said there was need for President Kagame's government to be harsh on the perpetrators to serve as a deterrent.

"In a way the government of Rwanda is trying to protect them and trying to improve their economic and financial status. We think it is really important to embark on security countrywide to severely punish those (perpetrators) who are doing that and enforce whereby if the minister can't do that, the police can't do that and if local leaders can't do that they could resign. The government should put a lot of pressure and measures on the entire population and punish those who are the perpetrators and even punishing those local leaders if they fail to protect the genocide survivors, I think that could really reduce the genocide survivors who are now dying," he said.

Gasasira said the government seems to be protecting those who are alleged to have fully participated in the country's 1994 genocide to the detriment of the genocide survivors.

"You know the government of Rwanda is putting pressure on security, justice, unity and reconciliation. But in unity and reconciliation you can't bend on one line making justice for genocide participators but fail to reinforce on giving security to genocide survivors," Gasasira pointed out.

Maxim Niyibizi, a genocide survivor was reportedly hacked with machetes by unknown assailants last week. It was reported that police preliminary investigation suggested that Niyibizi might have been killed by genocide suspects and their accomplices who don't want their acts in the 1994 genocide revealed.

Another genocide survivor, Emmanuel Ndishimye from Rugarama cell, Gatsibo district was also burnt with petroleum and is now undergoing treatment at a local hospital. This comes after the minister of internal affairs recently told genocide survivors to go to bed early and walk in groups when the group expressed concerns about insecurity.

XS
SM
MD
LG