Yesterday 14th April 2022, NAEB’s management and staff, government representatives, and partners gathered at the former headquarters of OCIR Café and OCIR Thé (merged to form NAEB) for the 28th Commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. The event included particularly, families and friends of employees of the former two bodies who were killed during the Genocide.
It was marked by testimonies, the laying of wreaths on the memorial site, and the lighting of the remembrance flame to pay tribute to the victims. In their testimonies, the victims’ children praised the former RPA soldiers for putting an end to the genocide. They also applauded the government for supporting them.
Claude Bizimana, CEO of NAEB, thanked mourners for coming to remember more than 330 OCIR Café and OCIR Thé employees who were killed during the Genocide, largely by their co-workers.
He slandered the role of these institutions in carrying out the Genocide:
“These two institutions "had a significant role in a variety of ways, but I'll focus on two of them: [Kangura was one of the best sources of hatred ideology leading to Genocide.] Ngeze Hassan's Kangura newspaper maintained a second office in OCIR Café. Machetes and other killing equipment were stored in the same office before being handed to Interahamwe.
“A second example comes from OCIR Thé's then-boss, Bagaragaza Michael, testifying at Arusha's ICTR court. He recounted how killers used the institution's trucks and fuel to exterminate Tutsis not only in OCIR but anywhere they could reach. What's more disgusting is that those killers, who were co-workers of the staff members we're mourning today, were paid as usual.”
Bizimana stated that the commemoration is once again an opportunity to combat and defeat genocide ideology and denial, which are prevalent on social media platforms and other communication channels in Rwanda and elsewhere.
He expressed his condolences to genocide survivors, reiterating that the NAEB, in collaboration with other institutions, will continue to support families whose relatives were former employees of the two OCIRs killed in the Genocide.