For the first time, the Kassapards family which is composed by former students of the University and Institutes from the Katanga province in DRC, commemorated on May 18, 2018 its former members victims of the genocide perpetrated against Tutsis in 1994.
The commemoration ceremony was enhanced by the presence of the President of Ibuka Organization, Prof. Jean Pierre Dusingizemungu, as well as the representatives of families of the former Kassapards victims of genocide.
Before this ceremony, Kassapards organized themselves to help a survivor of the genocide living in Ruyenzi in the Runda Sector, Kamonyi District in the direction of repairing her dwelling house.
The activity of commemoration began with a visit and a deposit of flowers at the Kigali memorial site in Gisozi, and continued at the Christus Center where a requiem mass was celebrated in memory of the victims before ending with an evening of commemoration.
According to the President of the Kassapards Family, Kayiranga Gakuba Theogene “ the purpose of this commemoration is to always keep in memory of the kassapards their former colleagues who were victims of the genocide perpetrated against the Tutsis”.
“It is also an opportunity to be in touch with the families of these victims so that they feel close to us”, He added.Kayiranga pointed out that there are only 23 Kassapards commemorated, not because they are the only former Kassapards victims of the genocide perpetrated against the Tutsis, but simply because it is about them that the Kassapards Family holds the information so far.
He promised that the search will continue so that possible revelation can be made about other former Kassapards victims of the genocide perpetrated against Tutsis.
Kayiranga invited anyone with new details on this subject to inform the Kassapards Organization so that the memory of its former members could be maintained in communion with their families.
As a reminder of the time of their lives, a documentary film featuring the photos taken from these victims was screened during the commemoration evening and their family members had given some comments.
In this regard, Dr. Dusingizemungu has asked the parents of these former Kassapards and survivors, in general, to hold out during the commemoration period and to fight for justice especially, so that a real reconciliation is established in Rwanda.
He reminded the youth present at the ceremony to follow the example of their elders, and they should not give up, but rather they must redouble their efforts to better fulfill their civic obligations.
To the Kassapards Family, Dr. Dusingizemungu underlined “your efforts to bring together the families of your former colleagues who were victims of the genocide are of great importance because this reassures them more for their future”.
He thanked those who realized the documentary film saying that “this documentary gives us an opportunity to share with our missing parents even if we do not see them with our eyes.
“The sadness that engenders for us the genocide should not make us forget the good times that we spent with ours who were victims of this tragedy” added Dr Dusingizemungu.
Hon Mukarugema Alphonsine who spoke on behalf of the families of the victims thanked the Kassapards Family for their action that has given hope to the families of the former Kassapards victims of genocide, adding that it is a real proof of love and unity. She promised that the collaboration between the Kassapards Family will continue in various activities and circumstances.
The Kassapards family has today nearly 200 members who are settled around the world collaborating closely and in mutuality.
Jean Louis KAGAHE