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France owes Rwanda an apology – PLO Lumumba reacts to damning report

Renowned Kenyan professor and Pan-Africanist, Patrick Loch Otieno Lumumba has stated that, French government must render an apology to the people of Rwanda.

“The French Government owe the People of Rwanda an unequivocal apology now that the French Commission has established their complicity in the 1994 Genocide.” He wrote on his official Facebook page.

The Professor equally believes that, Africa as a continent deserves an apology from colonialists for what individual countries suffered during the damning colonial period; he stated that, “all other pontificating colonialists should also apologize to Africans.”

His comment was a reaction to the recently released report which implicated the French government under the leadership of Francois Mitterrand for playing a role in the devastating 1994 Rwandan genocide which resulted in the death of 800,000 people.

The research leading to this revelation was conducted by a 15-member commission which was made up of historians including experts with experience on the Holocaust, the massacres of Armenians in World War I and international criminal law, establishing its neutrality and quality in delivery.

After studying archival documents from the period of French presence in Rwanda, the commission said France bears “overwhelming” responsibility due to the “failure” on the part of the former French leader, Francois Mitterrand to prevent the genocide following his adoption of a “binary view” which set the then Hutu president, Juvenal Habyarimana, against an “enemy” of the Tutsi forces whilst deciding to provide military intervention “belatedly.”

The report also said that, “for a long time, France was involved with a regime that encouraged racist massacres…It remained blind to the preparation of a genocide by the most radical elements of this regime.” It stated further that, French forces provided refuge for “murderers but also the masterminds of the genocide;” adding that, they were people “who the French political authorities refused to arrest.”

According to Professor Lumumba, the revelations from this Commission’s report shows that, France must render an apology to the good people of Rwanda who lost loved ones, relatives among others in a highly preventable bloody occurrence. What is your view on this?

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