On 1st October, 2020, SEVOTA Organization, in collaboration with the Ngororero District Authority, launched the Month of Unity and Reconciliation on the theme set by the National Commission for Unity and Reconciliation, “Let’s work together to build a Rwanda free from divisions and discrimination”.
The event was preceded by a Civil marriage by five (5) families as beneficiaries of SEVOTA in the “Iwacu ni Amahoro” project sponsored by “Kvinna till Kvinna”, from Muhororo and Ngororero sectors, Ngororero district, which had already twenty-five (25) years living illegally;
In the testimony of the married couples, they said that the main reason they spent all those years without a legal marriage was due to family disputes, mainly due to their incompatible marital history and the aftermath of the April 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.
It kept their families secret, with some members saying that it was not right for them to get married, and that they were always in conflict. Some of the male-born families say they should not marry to these women because their relatives have imprisoned them.
On the other hand, women are also accused of marrying bad killers, Genocide perpetrators, as it would be a violation of the ritual. Others hate marriage because there is no Mother, no Father to show it to.
In the testimonies of Innocent and Germaine as representatives of the married families (as he is usually the representative of the SEVOTA Groups in Ngororero sector), they said that the decision to make the commitment came after various training given by SEVOTA, but especially on the Law Nº 27/2016 of 08/07/2016 governing the management of marital property, gifts and inheritance, And they believe that it was an advantage when through SEVOTA, their Mother-in-laws and the Father-in-laws were trained in conflict prevention, that it caused their relationship with the family to change, to support them, and they accompanied them to the civil marriage ceremony.
At the Reception organized by Ngororero District, they expressed their happiness over the good leadership of the Republic of Rwanda, led by His Excellency President Paul Kagame.
They also thanked Ngororero District Leaders, (especially the Mayor who asked them to be Fruits) where his Staff in the Department of Good Governance attended the training to witness and train them in collaboration with SEVOTA organization, and organized a party for them.
They expressed their gratitude to SEVOTA family who followed them in their relationship and taught them up to a good level in their relationship, according to Felecien and Francine’s family, one of the married families.
Founder and Coordinator of SEVOTA Mrs. Mukasarasi Godelieve highlighted the main reason why SEVOTA aims to promote Unity and Reconciliation among Rwandans so that Rwandan society can rebuild in peace and harmony with respect for everyone’s rights.
She thanked Ngororero District Leaders for their continued cooperation in training these beneficiaries, as well as for being close to them in their daily lives, and thanked the District Mayor for his role in giving SEVOTA a plan of action for the welfare of the beneficiaries in particular and ‘Rwandans in general.
The Mayor of Ngororero District, Mr. Ndayambaje Godefroid, said that Ngororero District is pleased to launch the month dedicated for Unity and Reconciliation with such a good action.
He says that “the engagement of the couple in such a way, beyond the conflict largely caused by their families, is a positive step towards unity and reconciliation; because if they are no longer in conflict it is a matter of rejoicing”. He called on them to continue live in peace and advised them not to go back to the tragic history that has befallen them, but build families that are free from discrimination and divisions as per the theme of this year.
He concluded by saying that this date coincides with the day the RPF Inkotanyi forces launched a campaign to liberate the country, commending them for their bravery in freeing us from the shackles of bad leadership that led to the Genocide against the Tutsi.
He thanked His Excellency the President of the Republic Paul Kagame who led the struggle to stop the Genocide against the Tutsi, and to promote Good Governance which is the foundation of progress and unity of Rwandans.
He concluded by thanking SEVOTA for the positive idea to bring this Project, emphasizing that it was especially needed in Ngororero district because of its tragic history as there was a special feeling that the Genocide against the Tutsi had started earlier in the region.
He recommended that such activities would reach many and spread to other sectors as far as possible across the country strengthen our unity and reconciliation.