During the visit on June 12th, 2023, employees of QT Global Software were provided with a historical account of the Genocide against the Tutsi and how it unfolded in the area, starting with the resettlement of Tutsis in Bugesera, in the former Kigali Ngali Prefecture, making them easily identifiable.
Antoine Kagabo, an employee of the Ministry of National Unity and Civic Engagement (MINUBUMWE), recounted how Tutsis sought refuge in the Ntarama church, now a Genocide memorial, hoping to find protection in the house of God, but tragically, only a few of them survived the brutal killings.
He revealed that since the early 1960s, Tutsis from various parts of the country, such as Kigali, Kansi in the Butare Prefecture, Gisenyi, and other places, were brought to Bugesera, which was predominantly covered by forests, with the expectation that they would succumb to Tse-Tse fly-related diseases.
In 1961, Kagabo stated that the number of Tutsis had exceeded 10,000, despite the unfavorable living conditions in the area. He disclosed that Michel Rwagasana had written to the United Nations, raising the alarm about the situation, but his pleas were disregarded.
Rwagasana is a national hero, who falls in the Imena group, the second category of heroes.
He was a founding member of UNAR (Union Nationale Rwandaise). This political organization advocated for the unconditional independence of the country and was its Secretary General at the time of his death in 1963.
Rwagasana died in prison under the regime of Gregory Kaiyibanda because he had refused to embrace ethnic segregation.
Kagabo further explained that Tutsis continued to be systematically killed and subjected to persecution, oppression, denial of education, and expulsion from universities under the regimes of Kayibanda Gregoire and Habyarimana Juvenal until the perpetrators executed their plans to exterminate the Tutsis.
On April 15th, 1994, Tutsis sought refuge in the Ntarama church, hoping for protection within its holly walls, but were ruthlessly murdered by the Interahamwe. Killings continued in the nearby swamps.
RPA Inkotanyi soldiers arrived in the area on May 14th, 1994, and rescued those who had survived the attacks orchestrated by the Interahamwe militia.
After touring various sections of the memorial, Robert Kainamura, the Chief Executive Officer of QT Global Software Ltd, expressed gratitude to Kagabo for sharing the history and reaffirmed the company’s commitment to stand in solidarity with the Genocide survivors.
“Though this is a dark part of our history, it is important to acknowledge and understand it because only then can we plan for a brighter future. Without knowledge of the past, it becomes challenging to chart a course for the future," he said.
Ntarama Genocide Memorial serves as a resting place for over 6,000 victims who lost their lives at the Ntarama church and the surrounding areas.