The term Agaciro (meaning value) is the current mantra for the Rwandan government since their foreign aid was either cut or suspended by the international community. This word dominates Rwandan politics; however it’s bothersome to read the article which was written in The New Times, entitled Kigali Central Prison to become ‘Heritage Hotel’. The Rwandan Government daily paper stated that King Kigeli Ndahindurwa’s home will be demolished, because it was “mistakenly” sold in an auction and in its place a parking lot will be constructed. Where is the AGACIRO? Our king is still alive, we love him and he is still the head of our culture. Like many Rwandans I don’t understand what is wrong with the system of the Rwandan government; the law is being used the opposite way, why can’t this be stopped? Why would the minister of Sports and Culture, Protais Mitali, allow such an injustice to occur? If mistakes happened previously then we should not allow more mistakes to happen that will delete our history completely.
Mr. Mitali said many mistakes had happened where some of the residences of Rwandan kings were demolished, he agrees that it was a mistake but he cannot even think of stopping this from happening again. If Hotel Faucon is preserved as well as other buildings why can’t the government do the same for our King's House? Rwandans who had sought refuge in different countries then later returned to Rwanda were handed back their homes. So why then is our King not allowed the same privilege?
Who ordered the sale of the king’s house?
What is the Job of the minister of sports and culture if he cannot even protect our country’s heritage?
Who bought it?
If not one of the RPF companies aiming to harass every crucial name in the country, who sold it? If not the government, the article states it was bought by an investor to build a public parking place. If we all agree that this house is owned by our King and the kingdom why was it put in auction without consulting the King? Are Rwandans now been denied the right to have a king?
Protais Mitali stated that, “By mistake, the house was sold in public auction and we got to know about it late. Since the buyer acquired it legitimately there is no way to get it back.”
Mitali said his ministry has written to all local authorities and demanded them to protect heritage sites in their respective areas. But where is the heritage left when you have already auctioned such an important part of history?
The Rwandan Kingdom is over 1000 years old, the RPF is less than 20 years old we will remember RPF in history however we still need our kingdom history to stay alive. The countries surrounding Rwanda all kept their heritage and so even most countries in the World. Gen Juvenal Habyarimana who is responsible for his failure during his time as president of Rwanda, but also tried to keep our heritage alive. Why can’t our current government do the same? I am calling for the government to stop this senseless idea of demolishing our heritage. The Rwandan people please let’s join our hands together and protect our history because that is all we are left with. The RPF government will go but the line to the throne for our kingdom and our history should be preserved.
Mr Protais Mitali and the government of Rwanda in general should know that people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture are like a tree with no roots.
We love our King does and it does not matter whether you sell his house or not. You will not deny Rwandans their rights. An English man once said that ‘you can dance on a lions grave but you cannot became a lion,’ and our nation’s culture resides in the hearts and souls of its people. It does not matter how long it takes, the Rwandan people will see the right path to democracy which will allow them to practice their culture and involve their king who is being neglected by the current government.
Independent Reporter Salem News