The New Times (Kigali)

27 April 2014

Rwanda: German Devt Partners Boost Survivors With Rwf30 Million

Germany Development Cooperation (GIZ) has donated Rwf29.8 million to Genocide survivors.

The donation, received by the National Commission for the fight against Genocide (CNLG), was announced during a Genocide commemoration event at GIZ offices in Kigali, where a stone bearing 39 names of former employees killed in the pogrom was unveiled at the entrance of the offices.

The victims were engaged in developmental work with two companies GTZ and DED, which later merged to form GIZ.

The donation will be used mainly to put up shelter for survivors.

Maenner Ulrike, the GIZ country director, said: "We mourn with the families and we will continue to support, many of our employees lost their lives in the line of duty but today we remember with activities like the mobile photo exhibition that will enable young people learn about their past."

"The stone laid at the entrance of our office will remind us each day as we access the facilities to pray for the souls of the fallen colleagues."

Schieber Ella, GIZ head of division, Central and West Africa, said the stone will not only remind the people in Rwanda, but also the entire world about the genocide.

He said the organisation planned to reach out this week to survivors in Cambodia where another genocide took place in the last century.

"There have been many challenges in the past 20 years providing little time for reconciliation. This is also a lesson to the Germans and I am happy with the leaders for they have made it clear that we need to unite," added Schieber.

Peter Farenzholt, the Germany ambassador to Rwanda, stressed the importance of remembering.

"Anyone who forgets the past lives in darkness. The international community remembers the holocaust, that's why there is a call for international order that genocide should never happen again," he said.

"The Rwandan people today have a remarkable recovery, none of the observers expected that Rwanda would have remarkable progress, it could have ended up as a failed state but justice, integrity and hard work from all the people has contributed to the progress," the envoy added.

Albert Nsengiyunva, the State minister for technical and vocational education, lauded development partners who have supported Rwanda in its reconstruction.

"It is important to remember what happened today, then we can see how to focus forward. We wish to continue our partnership with GIZ, giving skills, hope for the future to help the youth have a brighter future," said the minister.

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