Darfur and Juba, 7 April 2016
Rwanda peacekeepers were joined by friends to commemorate the 22nd anniversary of 1994 Genocide against Tutsi.
In Darfur the event started by a walk to remember from Rwanda Battalion Camp in Super Camp El Fasher to the UNAMID Sector North headquarters Conference Hall. The ceremony included a prayer by Muslims and Christians, lit of candles in memory of the Genocide victims.
The event was marked by a testimony by Col Mathew Essien (pictured above) from Ghana Army who served under United Nations Mission in Rwanda in 1994, who gave a testimony of International Community failure to stop Genocide against Tutsi in Rwanda. “We shook hands with devil, we kissed the devil and we slept with the devil, above a million of people were killed in my face, when victims needed us, we got order to withdraw.…what happened in Rwanda is the globally shame and I hope it will never happen again” he said.
The guest of honor remarks was given by Lt Gen FM Kamanzi, the UNAMID Force Commander on behalf of the Joint Special Representative of United Nation in Sudan, who conveyed the message of the United Nations Secretary General at the occasion. “The best way to ensure that genocide and other egregious violations of human rights and international law can never occur again is to acknowledge shared responsibility and commit to shared action to protect those at risk. It is essential that Governments, the judiciary and civil society stand firm against hate speech and those who incite division and violence. We must promote inclusion, dialogue and the rule of law to establish peaceful and just societies”, reads in part the message of the UN Secretary General.
In South Sudan the commemoration was organized jointly by Rwanda peacekeepers and Rwandan Community. The event was attended by friends and different dignitaries including the Deputy Special Representative of the UN Secretary General, Hon Moustapha Soumare and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of South Sudan, Hon Peter Bashir Gbaind as guest of honor for the ceremony.
In his message, Hon Peter Bashir Gbaind commended the Government and the people of Rwanda for having embarked on journey of national rebuilding, healing and reconciliation to overcome the negative impacts of 1994 genocide against Tutsi. “Rwanda is an inspiration, a success story that should be emulated by all peace loving people in Africa and the World”, he declared.