Gicumbi survivors appeal for rehabilitation of Genocide memorials

On 9 April 2021 at 10:24

Survivors of the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi in Gicumbi district have appealed to relevant authorities to assist in upgrading genocide memorials without roofing noting that they are bound to deteriorate due to rain water that penetrates inside.

The request was made yesterday on Thursday 8th April 2021 during the commemoration of genocide victims in the district.

The event that took place at Mukeri and Gisuma genocide memorials located in Byumba sector attracted minimal participation of mourners in compliance with COVID-19 preventive measures.

Munyakazi André, a survivor with relatives buried at Mukeri memorial said that it is shameful to see some memorials without roofing that water penetrates inside easily.

He appealed to the Government for action to have these memorials upgraded.

“For instance, you can see that it is raining on this memorial. It would be better if the memorial is upgraded and get roofing because rain water usually penetrates inside the cemetery and destroys remains of deceased relatives,” he said.

Munyemana Augustin from Kageyo sector said that water drainage channels should be constructed and proceed with further upgrading works to ensure remains are kept in safe conditions.

Kamizikunze Anastase, the President of IBUKA, organization umbrella of genocide survivors in Gicumbi district has said that three of six memorials are not roofed.
He however explained that they plan to relocate these memorials to one memorial at district level that will be properly constructed.

The mayor of Gicumbi district, Ndayambaje Félix has explained that they are seeking a solution to build one memorial that will accommodate remains from five memorials in different areas.

“We have a plan to build a decent genocide memorial at district level whereby some memorials can be integrated. We are holding talks with the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide. We have already submitted a proposal to run two memorials including one of Tutsis killed during the 1994 Genocide and another one of victims killed on accusation of espionage,” he said.

Ndayambaje revealed that the genocide memorial at district level is expected to be built in Mutete sector at a cost of over Rwf 800 million.

Gicumbi district has six memorials, three of which accommodate remains of 1541 genocide victims.

These include Mutete, Rutare, Nyarurama, Mukeri and Mugina genocide memorials as well as Gisuna memorial accommodating killed victims accused of espionage.

One of genocide memorials in Gicumbi.