Online Newspaper for Students at School of Journalism

1994 Genocide survivor Hodari Marie Rose advises youth ‘Let’s thrive to be human’

Marie Rose Hodari, born in Shyorongi was one of the survivors of the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi in attendance at the annual Mount Kigali University Commemoration of the Genocide against the Tutsi. There will always be calamities, disasters, and destructions on physical earth all these leave memories in us. But what happened in 1994 in Rwanda was a proper measure of how divisions, racism, and ethnical difference have gotten better of the human in us.

For a proper measure and explanation of how the survivors, victims, and children of those that murdered innocent people should live their life in the modern world. Hodari is the only survivor in a family of four, a mother, a father, and a sister who all were taken from her by the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. Living in a normal world, Hodari was a child born with her sister Cadette, she had a father and a mother before the tragedy.

Speaking to the students of Mount Kigali University who had attended a Genocide memorial program organized by the school to commemorate the lives of over one million people who lost their lives in the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi. Hodari had to go brief in her story and journey from losing her parents and running for her life to becoming a stable mother of two daughters now.

Hodari Marie Rose said “We were seeking safety in the former ETO Kicukiro where the militia came and started to murder some of our relatives and friends, we decided to escape to Nyanza hill where we stayed 3 days. Later on, escaped to Gatenga and the house got destructed then went to Kagarama near Muyange, and my father got shot dead by the Habyarimana army. We were left hopeless, my mother gave me the responsibility to take care of my sister whenever I went we would have to be together, but on approaching Amahoro stadium where the UN troops were protecting thinking we would find safety, little did we know they had to get the foreign expatriates and leave the country, we begged them to kill us using guns they couldn’t, from there the militia entered the stadium what the did was totally inhumane, insane, scary, my little sister was killed from there and they had to come and throw grenades still to confirm if everyone was dead “

She continued “I was deeply wounded. I still have nightmares. Yet, the voice of God kept telling me never to give up. Having met other survivors and we share the stories and strengthen each other, God blessed me with two children both of who are girls. Having someone I could speak to, helped a lot. Being able to tell my personal story to others helped me in my healing journey. People are still going through tragedies around the world. Terrorist groups are doing horrible things to people. This is why we need to speak up and be a voice for these people.” This has made me think that it’s not too late that we can change all around us from the past history, we can learn from it and still fear anything like that occurring again “she added.

Students and staff of Mount Kigali University pay their respect to those who lost their lives during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi at the Kigali memorial site in Gisozi.

At the end of her speech, she had to simplify it for the majority of youth who were at an age of whom we can say didn’t witness the tragedy. Madam Hodari concluded “let’s thrive to be human”

The thing about genocide is that you definitely see the worst in people, but you also see the best. It’s completely unbelievable, but looking at Rwanda’s experience of rebuilding, there’s this sense that you can move past this tragedy, there is an ‘after. For everyone, the takeaway from this is a message of hope. Let’s thrive and sacrifice to build a better Rwanda and make the world a better place to live.

Share this article