New book calls on churches to sincerely apologize for their role in Genocide against the Tutsi

By Elias Hakizimana.

Edouard Sebera Muhashyi’s book titled ‘Ingoma Ntizisa Hasa Abiru’ which loosely means Governments differ but their people look the same,  has requested churches to make apology for their involvement in the 1994 genocide  against the Tutsi which claimed lives of a milllion people.

The author officially launched this book on April 27, 2019, an event that attracted many people including youth, academicians, politicians and others took place in Kigali Library Service.

Speaking to the media, Sebera said that the idea was from his observation and experience of the past of Rwanda during the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi.

“I was mature in 1994 as  I was 36 years old. I cannot say that I wanted to become an author but from the bad history of  the genocide against the Tutsi, I had to document what I saw to help Rwandans strive for and achieve the never again mantra that the genocide will never reoccur,” Sebera said.  

Sebera signing in the book for the memory of Participants to the launching ceremony./Elias Hakizimana.

The 61-year-old author focused on the role of the then government and churches in the genocide perpetrated against the Tutsi, calling church representatives to apologize.

“After genocide, churches continued to deny genocide saying their good sides and hiding the negative role they played in genocide, while we all have to work together as Rwandans to build the country we want,” he said.

His book narrates the history of genocide since the colonial period and their involvement in genocide planning and implementation.

He said the gap is still identified in churches in the journey of reconciliation as they do not want to say sorry. 

Edouard Sebera Muhashyi, the author of the book titled ‘Ingoma Ntizisa Hasa Abiru’/Elias Hakizimana.

“Catholic church and the Pope himself apologized, but their behaviors are still critical after asking for forgiveness. They have to change the way they preach their gospel, they do not accept that their lessons failed, they have to change and strive to have a Christian who cannot think of killing, and even stealing. They always tell their Christians that God forgives every sin, which they have to change,” Sebera noted.

He said the book recommends readers to also have idea to write about the genocide against the Tutsi.

Comments from the community

Claudia Nishimwe, a family member of the author who was at the launching ceremony said she likes the book because it highlights the role of churches to give power and practice genocide against the Tutsi. 

She said the book will help to keep the memories and remember the history of genocide against the Tutsi, and that it will help to reduce denials and all people with negationism.

“I was born in Gisenyi, Rubavu District and I know Tutsi who were killed in churches, most of church representatives including Muslims killed many Tusti in Gisenyi, we know the role of Presbyterian Church in genocide, the books will encourage all of people who involved in Genocide to apologize,” Nishimwe said.   

Claudia Nishimwe who was 12 year-old in 1994 remembers how Pastors killed their colleague Tutsi including her Father/Elias Hakizimana.

Dr Jean Baptiste Gasasira was also at the launching of the book. He said that it should teach Rwandans to strive for Never Again Genocide, adding that churches need to make a step and apologize for their role in the genocide against the Tutsi as the government itself did.

“As the current government accepted the role in genocide and apologized, all churches should also take time and accept their role, apologize and help the government to build resilience of survivors of the genocide against the Tutsi.

You cannot understand how Archbishop Vincent could help MRND to kill Tutsis, if church leaders could commit to tell killers to stop, most of them could not participate in the genocide,” Gasasira said.

Sebera’s book has around 213 pages with 12 titles. It highlights chronological history of the genocide against the Tutsi until July 1994. 

Many people following the launch of the book.

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Elias Hakizimana

Elias Hakizimana, CEO&Founder of The Inspirer Ltd,(www.rwandainspirer.com) is a professional Rwandan Journalist with Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Communication, received from University of Rwanda’s College of Arts and Social Sciences (CASS) in 2014. He served various media houses in Rwanda including Rwanda Broadcasting Agency (RBA) in 2013 and became passionate with English Online and Print Media Publications where he exercised his talent as a Freelance News Reporter for The New Times, The Independent, The Rwanda Focus, Panorama and more before he became a Self-Entrepreneur as the CEO and Founder of The Inspirer Limited in early 2017.

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