Rwanda: Genocide - Wiped Out Families Commemorated

The thousands of families that were completely wiped out during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi present yet another evidence that the bloody atrocities were premeditated, Egide Gatari, the President of the Association of Former Students Survivors of the Genocide (GAERG) has said.

He made the remarks on Saturday during an event organized to remember these families, which took place at Nyanza Genocide Memorial in Kicukiro District.

To date, statistics that about 15,593 families were completely wiped out during the genocide.

A family is considered wiped out when both parents and all the children are killed.

Altogether, the wiped out families in Rwanda comprised 68,871 members, who were all slain during the genocide.

Annually, GAERG organises an event to commemorate the completely wiped out families.

Speaking to the people that turned up for the event, Gatari reminded them of the high number of wiped out families, noting that every district in the country has such families.

Here, he said that this testifies to the fact that the genocide was premeditated.

"We have identified families in every district of the country where neither father, mother nor child survived. This shows that the plan of annihilating the Tutsi was planned and premeditated," he said.

Speaking at the event, Johnston Busingye, the Minister of Justice and Attorney General said that commemorating such families is an act of restoring dignity to them.

"When we are doing this we are representing them (the wiped out families). And I think that where they are, they can see us. We should therefore continue to represent them, talk about their wishes and aspirations, and strive to achieve what they were not able to achieve," he said.

"It is the only way that restores dignity to them, the only way that can make their memory live on," he added.

Busingye also urged Rwandans to remember the evils of the genocide and put up measures to fight any genocidal tendencies.

"At such a time, we should remember the evils of the Genocide and what made it happen. We should remember that it won't happen, and continue to take measures to fight its ideology," he said.

Through a written note, First Lady Jeannette Kagame also sent a message of condolence in honour of the wiped out families.

"Today we remember the families that were wiped out during the genocide against the Tutsi in 1994. Men, women and children that were robbed of their lives, and denied opportunity of having a future," she said.

"May remembering them give us strength of heart, and the zeal to fight against genocide ideology and minimization of the genocide, as we continue with the journey of healing and uniting Rwandans," she wrote.

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