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Rwanda Senate Raises Concerns Over Gacaca Archives

Kigali – Members of the Senate have raised concerns over how government plans to archive Gacaca files indicating that the documents are fragile and need immediate care.

The concerns were raised on March 30 during a meeting with the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide (CNLG), aimed at updating the legislators on the preparations for the 16th commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Senator Joseph Karemera said plans to archive Gacaca documents came in late and that concerned authorities should take immediate action to ensure that the files are not damaged.

“Gacaca courts have now ended and we are currently facing problems of how we can preserve these documents,” Karemera said. ‘These are delicate files that are currently kept in a risky state; there are many people out here who would want to destroy them.”

The government chose CNLG to inherit the archives of the National Gacaca Courts Service (SNJG) after the closure of the semi-traditional courts.

CNLG is currently identifying the most effective way of archiving the documents.

Meanwhile, during the senatorial session, CNLG Commissioner, Francois Xavier Rusanganwa urged Senators to take a prime role in the upcoming commemoration of the Genocide.

“We request all of you to play a major role in the talk shows that have been organized as part of the commemoration week,” Rusanganwa said.

He also told Senators that the 16th Genocide commemoration will be centered on managing trauma cases.

According to CNLG commissioner, Jean Pierre Dusingizemungu, although several measures have been put in place, including training of local authorities to handle cases of the consequences of the Genocide, 16 years after the Genocide, trauma cases are still increasing.

The Executive Secretary of CNLG Jean de Dieu Mucyo told the senators that to date, handling of consequences of the 1994 Genocide is still one of the challenges the country is facing.

“We are preparing an International Symposium from April 4-6 in which local and international experts will come up with concrete plans of dealing with trauma cases related to the genocide.”

Several activities, including talk shows, town hall meetings and public addresses, will be held as part of the commemoration.



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