Rwanda: A reconciliation that violates child rights is doomed.

Cyprien, 13, is forced to serve as domestic slave because his father is a genocide convict.

In reparation and repentance for having exterminated the family of Antoinette UZABAKIRIHO during the Tusti genocide in 1994, Anastase Habyarimana, 58 years old, decided to hand on his 13 years old son Cyprien Bigirimana.

At the present time, Cyprien Bigirimana lives with Antoinette UZABAKIRIHO and he is in charge of all her domestic chores. Draw water, look for fire wood, clean the house, wash clothes, etc…

I read it from here and didn’t get enough courage to go through. I felt irk when I was already half the text. I forwarded it to my aunt to read, she only said it was unbearable. A week later, I searched the article again and read it, I contained myself and was able to read it through to the end.

As I type this blog, it echoes in my head like “You are my domestic slave because you are a Hutu child of the genocidal Hutu father who killed my family nine years before you were born.

Yeah! You got it right. I personally don’t’ know what happened to “the particular attention to the rights of special protection and care afforded to minors” in Rwanda; the reconciliation process violates the child rights.

I try to think about Cyprien Bigirimana, he is alone in that corner, none advocates for him, his family donated him like a pet, the community doesn’t care, the church, the government… none cares. Cyprien Bigirimana should be going to school, he should be cherishing one of those surreal and fantastic dreams. Becoming a doctor, becoming a pilot of spatial ship… becoming the Secretary General of the United Nations…

A child, Rwandan or not, is not a contribution that one gives to victims of his/her madness as a reparation.

These are the consequences of a genocide 22 years later, reaching a generation that hasn’t even seen the genocide; consequences of bad leadership that characterized Rwanda for centuries…

Such are the consequences of Kagame’s RPF regime that missed the noble opportunity to unite Rwandans when they launch divisional government programs like “Ndi Umunyarwanda” according to which part of the population must be humiliated and should apologize for the crimes that they did not commit.

The peaceful cohabitation of Interahamwe killers and genocide survivors can be seen as an indicator of reconciliation, but one must double-check if there is no hidden defect where by a single child is deprived of the basic right of stay with her/his both parents.

Tomorrow is another day of drudgery for Cyprien Bigirimana…

Rwanda Briefing