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Upon arrival, they visited Nyarugunga Centre, a home for ex-combatants with disabilites, before proceeding to Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre where they laid wreaths in tribute to the victims of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
“Each time I visited this place, I have been moved to tears. This memorial stands on sacred ground where a quarter of a million people lie buried. The scale of the massacre almost defies comprehension,’’ said the UN Secretary General after a tour of the memorial.
Speaking on the failure of the UN to prevent and then stop the genocide, Ban Ki-moon said that an important lesson had been learnt. “Such acts will never happen anywhere again.”
On Rwanda’s progress, the UN Secretary General commended Rwandans for their recovery less than twenty years after the genocide. “We commend Rwanda Government and the people of Rwanda and hope post conflict countries will take a lesson from how and what you have achieved.’’
Ban Ki-Moon and his delegation proceeded to Rwanda National Police Headquarters where they visited one stop centre and unveiled the plaque for the ‘Centre of Excellence for the fight against violence against women and girls in conflict situations’ at the Headquarters of Rwanda National Police.
Speaking at the occasion World Bank President Dr Kim Jim Yong lauded Rwanda’s effort in empowering women and actively fighting gender based Violence. “We explicitly congratulate President Paul Kagame and Mrs. Jeannette Kagame for their tireless efforts,’’ he said.
In addition, Dr. Kim congratulated Rwanda for setting a world record of having a female majority in Parliament. “This sends a strong message to the world.’’
Following this, President Paul Kagame welcomed them to Rwanda and thanked for the important visit. In discussions, President Kagame thanked them for the partnerships that have produced sustainable results for Rwandans.
The UN Secretary General thanked President Kagame for co-chairing the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) group. He also praised Rwanda’s radical efforts which have allowed the country to be on track to meet the MDGs. “I hope many African nations will emulate what Rwanda is doing.”
Mr. Ban Ki-moon and Dr. Kim are in the country for two days before heading to Uganda.