By Frank Kanyesigye

KIGALI –The British Parliament, last week, marked the 17th commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

According to a statement from the Rwanda High Commission in the UK, the event was organized by the Party Parliamentary Group on the Great Lakes (APPG).

Speaking at the event, MP Eric Joyce, and Chair of APPG, observed that an estimated one million people were killed in just 100 days using machetes and other dehumanising instruments in the Genocide.

The good news, he said, is that 17 years on, Rwanda has managed to rebuild itself and is one of the most promising nations in Africa.

Joyce added that although survivors still face many challenges, the country has made a remarkable recovery.

The commemoration, that took place at the House of Commons, was attended by Members of Parliament, Genocide survivors as well as staff of the Rwandan High Commission.

Ernest Rwamucyo, Rwanda’s High Commissioner to the UK, commended APPG for organizing the annual commemoration.

“Rwanda has changed for the good. The momentum of positive change in our country cannot be stopped,” Rwamucyo said.

The envoy noted that the country will continue to remember Genocide victims in order to accord dignity to those who perished, and to ensure that it never happens again.

“In remembering, we also commit to forgive those who sincerely seek to be forgiven,” he noted.

Stephen Crabb MP and Nicola Blackwood MP, read testimonies of Genocide survivors.

Two Rwandan survivors, Alphonsine Kabagabo and Jean Bosco Ngabonzima narrated their stories.

The commemoration was observed earlier than April 7 because the Parliament will be in recess. The major Genocide commemoration event in UK will take place tomorrow at the Southwark Cathedral in central London.

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