April 18, 2009

Story By Debra Dollar

Gatari Jean Paul

Gatari Jean Paul, a 25 years old year old Rwandese and a survivor of the Rwanda genocide. He was 10 years old by the time this disgrace happened to their country. Still innocent and never knew what being a Hutu or a Tutsi meant except that Hutus were tall and Tutsis had long noses.

The whole genocide started by threats from their neighbors promising to kill them just after the president’s plane crash that was believed to have been a plot against one of the tribes. The whole genocide was and is believed to be a problem with the governance and political setting. Men and women started slaughtering people mercilessly like animals once they came across an individual.

Paul’s family had to run for their safety as their lives were at the edge. Him and the still alive family members seek refuge in houses. While some of them burnt in houses, others were bitten to death, and the pit latrines were the compost areas. Paul’s family house was burnt down and they sought refuge in a neighbor’s house which was also burnt down and on the run, they decided to hide in the bushes where the killers found them but were¬† rescued by the Rwanda Patriotic Front who gave them a safer refuge

Due to these killings, he felt hatred in his heart for everyone and could not consider anyone a friend. “My father is a survivor but lame and 60 members of my extended family perished in the genocide.” John said.

The whole of his nuclear family members survived but were left with the duty of looking for bodies of their family members. Some were found in pit latrines, others burnt beyond recognition, while others were found with dents lying on the ground. Read the rest of this entry »