Today in 1994: Rwandan Genocidal cabinet instructs soldiers to take lead in killing the Tutsi

indafrica June 9, 2020
Updated 2020/06/09 at 4:55 PM

According to the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide (CNLG), 26 years ago, on June 9, 1994, the government of the day approved “strong measures” to accelerate the so-called ” auto-defense civile ” programme.

Among others, Prime Minister Jean Kamanda’s government, spent up to Rwf50 million (a huge sum at the time) in the acceleration of the massacre of the Tutsi through the so-called civil defence programme.

According to the Commission, one of the highlights of the Genocide against the Tutsi in June 1994, on the side of the criminal government, was to look for ways to get more people involved in the killings through the programme.

“The programme provided arms and money to expedite the killing of the Tutsi so that wherever the RPF liberated they would find that all Tutsi were dead. This was discussed during the Government meeting on June 09, 1994,” reads part of a statement by the Commission.

As noted, the June 9, 1994 diary of the then Minister of Local Government, Edouard Karemera shows that on this date the Government meeting convened to assess the use of Rwf50 million which had been disbursed by the Government in the context of implementing Prime Minister Jean Kambanda’s instructions of May 25, 1994 on the expedition of the Genocide.

In order to continue supporting the “auto-defense civile” programme, a Cabinet meeting held on June 09, 1994 called on the National Bank (BNR) to reconsider how Account No. 120.12.33 allocated to receive the support from the Ministry of Planning (MINIPLAN) would do well.

It is noted that BNR was also provided with specimens indicating the signatories for the Account.

The Cabinet meeting decided to expedite the killing of the Tutsi in regions where they had not yet been killed.

“The cabinet meeting of June 9, 1994 also reviewed the progress of the Auto-defense civile programme and found that there was a need for improvement in order for the Genocide to be carried out everywhere and expeditiously.

“The first thing was to prepare a long report to be submitted to the Prime Minister outlining the implementation of the programme across the country. It was mentioned that in some places, people have not responded well to the “auto-defense civile” programme and necessitated that the soldiers take the lead in showing people how to find the enemy and fight him.”

As noted, the latter meant that soldiers were required to show the public how the killing of the Tutsi should proceed and prepare a report explaining the course of the massacre.

The second item on the agenda of the Government was to conduct a census of young men who received both the training and weapons in the “auto-defense civile” programme in each Commune, and to report it to the Prefect and discuss it with the military commanders in the prefecture so that errors could be rectified, so that the Genocide can spread across the country.

The third resolution adopted by the Kambanda Government, as noted, was to mobilize all levels to intensify the campaign through especially the media and community outreach meetings to mobilize them for joining hands to fight the enemy everywhere.

That meant, people would be encouraged to continue searching for the Tutsi who were still alive.

“The meeting decided to appoint a permanent staff member in the Ministry of local government in charge of preparing daily publications available to the media and local authorities to assist them in the campaign.”

The assignment was given to Faustin Nkiko who was formerly the sous prefect of Byumba Prefecture.

The Cabinet also agreed that the Prime Minister should write to the Commander-in-Chief of the Rwandan Armed Forces and ask him to instruct the army leaders so that the military would show people how to locate the enemy and provide them with the necessary equipment and advice to make the operation a success.

According to CNLG, the evidence found in the resolutions of the June 09, 1994 meeting shows how Kambanda’s Government implemented the massacre of Tutsi throughout the country.

“The government gave instructions on how the Tutsi massacre should be carried out, provided equipment and weapons and assessed that the Genocide was committed throughout the country.”

“It is clear that the Genocide against the Tutsi is a massacre planned and perpetrated by the government as confirmed by various international bodies.”

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