Date of Transmission6–7 December 1993
Name of TapeC6 K/95
SourceMinistry of Information
Prosecution ExhibitP103/143
Name of TranslatorMarie Vianney Uwamahoro
Date of Translation17–19 April 2000
Duration60 Minutes
Original PDF

R.T.L.M. Tape 0143


Side A

  • Kantano interviews Mr. Gustave about his sentence partially passed by Joseph KAVARUGANDA
  • Announcements by Kantano

Side B

  • GAHIGI talks about electricity problems in Kimihurura.
  • He also talks about the killing of President NDADAYE and members of his entourage.
  • A poem dedicated to President NDADAYE by Mrs. Dominique UWAYEZU.
  • GAHIGI deplores the torture perpetrated by the killers of President NDADAYE.
  • Kantano’s coverage of President NDADAYE’s funeral.

Side A

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA, Journalist for R.T.L.M.

…KAVARUGANDA yesterday talked about their dispute, You heard what he said yesterday on R.T.L.M.… I would like to ask you to tell us what you think about it and, by the way, it will be the last time we host you here in our studios. As a matter of fact, as KAVARUGANDA said that you were one of us, we cannot abandon you and, moreover, we think that you were wronged. We would like to know your opinion.

Speaker: MR. GUSTAVE

Well… Mr., Kantano, thank you for asking me for my opinion. Let me remind Mr. Joseph KAVARUGANDA, President of the Court of Cassation, that all he said on radio R.T.L.M. to defend himself is completely unfounded and has no connection whatsoever with the law suit that led us to court, even though he was able to read the words on our posters. It is astonishing to see that he is now dodging the issue and trying to confuse the journalists and other listeners who do, not know the law.

I would like, once again, to explain to the listeners and KAVARUGANDA, that we went to court not to ask that the case in which I am accused of the murder of Seth BIMENYIMANA be expedited as he wanted the listeners to believe, but rather to ask KAVARUGANDA to hand over the file for the case in which I filed a complaint against him for violation of procedure.

This type of complaint is called “a petition for miscarriage of justice” and I filed my claim on 6 July 1993. A claim for miscarriage of justice arises in the case of fraud, arbitrary decision or denial of justice as provided for in article 254, paragraphs 1 and 2 of the civil and commercial code of procedure.

He registered my petition on 14 July 1993 and should have replied to it by 14 August 1993. Instead of doing so, he kept the file in his drawer and to this day, he has not even 1993. Instead of doing so, he kept the file in his drawer and to this day, he has not even sent me the receipt for the file fees. He kept everything. In order to stress my point, and for all the Rwandan people, including KAVARUGANDA, to understand that this gentleman will never triumph, I ask him to first read all the documents he has, which gentleman will never triumph, I ask him to first read all the documents he has, which irrevocably pin him down. I am talking of the following documents: but [sigh] first of all, let me remind those who are listening to me now that Mr. KAVARUGANDA was appointed public prosecutor by Presidential decree no. 163/02 of 8 July 1976, of 3 January 1979, which appeared in the official gazette no. 2 (b), of 15 January 1979.

First document: Findings of the inquiry carried out about me by his colleague of the Kigali central prosecutor’s office, deputy public prosecutor Ladislas MUTABAZI, and Kigali central prosecutor’s office, deputy public prosecutor Ladislas MUTABAZI, and submitted to KAVARUGANDA on 8 May 1978, of which he acknowledged receipt on 28 May 1978. He made written comments on the findings and signed. In the said conclusions, MUTABAZ1 explained to him that I had been arrested on mere suspicion and that there was no single element of material proof in the file that could cause me to be convicted for the murder of the late Seth B1MENY1MANA. I am using the exact words in the document.

On page 5 of these findings, he explains that Seth’s wife, Mrs. MUKESHARUREMA, testified after reaching an understanding with the public prosecutor, who was Joseph KAVARUGANDA. That means that they conspired against me before my arrest and, by the way, that was why they talked of the 8 millions which never existed, claiming that Seth had withdrawn the money from the Banque Commercialé in Cyangugu in my presence on 27 July 1976, and kept quiet about the fact that he died on 21 July 1976.

Second document: Let him read the copy of judgment RMP 54678/PRORE up to MP 3924/R.16 [sic] which was sent to the Court of Cassation of which he was the president. He held that post from January 1979 and he is the one who made the final ruling on the case on 13 May 1980, under reference No, RA412/1303/1979. That implies that the judgment is unfounded and that it must be reviewed so that the case is heard afresh, for the following two reasons:

Reason number 1: It is based on conspiracy and abuse of power and not a single piece of reliable evidence was presented, and the person who invented the file approved it by his signature. By the way, I have the document in full and it was, moreover, published in the Umunara magazine of 3 November 1993. Those who wish to know about this unfair treatment can buy the magazine and read it.

Reason number 2: It was handled by an incompetent judge, by virtue of Article 77, Paragraph 8 of the law of 24 August 1962 on judicial organization and competence, according to which “any judge may be challenged if he has already participated in the case in his capacity as an employee of the Prosecution”; and article 78 of the same law stipulates that: “any judge must abstain from the case if any of the motives mentioned in article 77 is proved to exist.” In other words, according to the provisions of this law, which has been in force since 1980 by the time this judgment was made, it is clear and indisputable that KAVARUGANDA should have withdrawn from the case without waiting for a petition to that effect. Therefore, this judgment is not valid. That is why it should be reviewed and the case heard again.

Third document: Read a copy of Judgment No. R0092/1303/93 against the Prosecution delivered on 11 February 1993. This judgment was reviewed upon a request by the Prosecution. Again, together with Seth’s wife, KAVARUGANDA interfered with this case. You too can see that he was not competent to handle even the first case and he case. You too can see that he was not competent to handle even the first case and he made matters worse by ignoring my claim for miscarriage of justice, which had been presented in accordance with the rules and received within the specified time limit. In addition, he violated article 251 of the civil and commercial code of procedure which stipulates that “the principal civil petition is addressed to the same court but composed of other judges.” In bad faith, he also ignored article 102 of the law of 23 February 1963 establishing the Supreme Court, which stipulates that “in case of inadmissibility, the case is sent back to the court that last handled it, but composed of other judges.”

All of you will therefore notice that according to these provisions, KAVARUGANDA cannot deny either this judgment or my claim for miscarriage of justice which, also, is legally in order. What is surprising, sad and incomprehensible is that in the pseudo judgment he handed out, he insists that my claim for miscarriage of justice is unfounded, because, according to him, “article 89, paragraph 7 of decree no. 09-80 of 7 July I980 authorizes him to do so,” whereas the said paragraph 7 of article 89 stipulates that he must actually withdraw from the case, given that this provision replaces paragraph 7 of article 77 of the above-mentioned law. It is really painful.

Because of all these serious errors and others I prefer not to mention, I filed a petition for miscarriage of justice, based on paragraph 1 of article 254, of the civil and commercial code of procedure. I also asked for damages amounting to 15 million francs with interest on overdue payment of 10% calculated from February 1993 up to the date of the judgment. KAVARUGANDA was also supposed to submit his defense in July, the month during which I filed my petition, but he violated article 259 of the civil and commercial code of procedure which stipulates that “if the petition is admitted, the magistrate against whom it is filed is informed in one month, and he must submit his defense within the same period. The judge against whom a petition is filed cannot be both judge and an interested party. He must abstain from handling the dispute and all those in which his opponent is a party. As a matter of fact, in such a case, he and I participate in the trial in the same capacity.

According to article 257 of the civil and commercial code of procedure, which was replaced by article 117 of decree no. 09/80 of 7 July 1980 which is currently in force, “if a claim for miscarriage of justice is filed against a judge of the Court of Cassation, it is only this court that shall be competent to handle the case.” In this case, KAVARUGANDA and I participate in the trial in the same capacity. I complained against Judge Joseph KAVARUGANDA who was then the president of the Court of Cassation. He should therefore not have abused his office by holding on to a file for a Cassation. He should therefore not have abused his office by holding on to a file for a case which he is not competent to handle, as if he was above the law. That is why he must hand over the file and allow the competent judges to review it, in accordance with the provisions of 259 mentioned above. Indeed, in the administration of justice, we should act in conformity with the law and not according to individual feelings, as KAVARUGANDA often does. I am therefore within my rights and, in accordance with article 259, which I have already mentioned, I have the right to ask him to unconditionally release my file so that it may be sent to the competent judges.

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

Gustave, is it true that the evidence you provided in order to have the case reviewed is not new?

Speaker: Gustave

Well… KAVARUGANDA’s allegations are totally unfounded, from what was discovered after I left prison in 1989. Here is the proof:

…[inaudible] … on 1 December 1993, in his comments on the file of the death of the late Seth BIMENYIMANA over Radio R.T.L.M., he again tried to insinuate my implication whereas on 3 May 1993, the Prosecution had already asked that the trial be reviewed with a view to acquitting me, because evidence to support this had been discovered. By judgment RMPA 5822/ PRORE … RMP 54678-BINGA/ PRORE, which became res judicata, KAVARUGANDA and the judges sitting with him sentenced me to death on 13 May 1980. None of those judges bothered check with the Banque Commercialé in Cyangugu whether indeed Seth had withdrawn the eight million francs.

…in clauses 10 to 22 of the judgment, they concluded that I had murdered BIMENYIMANA in Kibuye in the evening of 27 July 1976 with the intention of stealing the eight million he had withdrawn in the morning from the Banqué Commercialé in Cyangugu in my presence. The Prosecution… for the Cyangugu Court of Appeal gave me a letter dated 28 November … 1991, which stated that the Prosecution had discovered the ledger for account no. 60… of Seth BIMENYIMANA. That same letter also indicated that he had died by accidental drowning on 2I July 1976. From the death certificates issued by the authorities of Gishyita commune, and from the letter written to MUKESHARUREMA, wife of BIMENYIMANA, by the SONARWA and the Banqué Commercialé in Kigali on 26 July 1976, one million francs had been paid to that woman on 25 July 1976, following the accident in which her husband had drowned on 21 July 1976.

If indeed KAVARUGANDA’s statements are correct, when he unjustifiably incriminated me when he was an officer of the Prosecution, did he find out from this bank if I had me when he was an officer of the Prosecution, did he find out from this bank if I had really accompanied BIMENYIMANA when he went to withdraw the money on 27 July 1976 as he said? The ledger was discovered after I had spent thirteen years in prison. Supposing I had presented it during my trial in the court of first instance and in the court of appeal, would I have been condemned on the grounds that I had accompanied the deceased on 27 July 1976, and yet it would have been obvious that he had died by drowning on 21 July 1976?

Furthermore, all those ledgers and letters were certified by a notary, which proves that they were lawfully obtained. The documents were actually discovered by the competent services: the court of first instance and the Prosecution. Those are the people who condemned me. Did Seth’s wife take to KAVARUGANDA and his colleagues any ledger from the Banque Commercialé in Cyangugu to confirm that her husband had withdrawn the money on 27 July 1976? Let them show us that ledger, for us to verify if BIMENYIMANA indeed withdrew the eight million. On what do they base their allegations, then?

Another thing, he continues to declare that “this ledger is not valid” and contests the documents according to which BIMENYIMANA died by drowning, and which enabled his wife… BIMENYIMANA’s wife, to receive the eight million from SONARWA. Did they produce any medical proof to support the claim of murder which would refute this death certificate according to which the deceased died by accidental drowning on 27 July 1976? Did they ever produce such evidence? They simply sentenced me basing on mere feelings, as they say themselves in the conclusions of this pseudo investigation.

Can KAVARUGANDA quote us the legal provision authorizing him to handle this case and to hand down a final judgment on 13 May 1980, and yet he had handled the matter in his capacity as an officer of the Prosecution as indicated in the so-called conclusions of in his capacity as an officer of the Prosecution as indicated in the so-called conclusions of the inquiry carried out on me? Moreover, these documents were signed by KAVARUGANDA on 29 May 1978. MUTABAZI himself evokes this injustice in his comments. The letter requesting the ledger of BIMENYIMANA’s account was written by the prosecution at the Cyangugu Court of Appeal on 28 November 1992: why then should he lie and say that it was considered in the earlier judgments of 1979 to 1980? …that a court composed of other judges handles the case, given that he was a … [inaudible] … party. Let him say the truth, of which he is a guarantor. Is there a law that allows a judge to pass judgment without carrying out an investigation on a crucial piece of evidence which could otherwise have helped in proving any responsibility in this murder case? Let him cancel the judgment that was rendered on the basis of this evidence of the eight million, since he personally admits that the evidence never existed. What other proof will he then bring forward, to prove that I murdered Seth BIMENYIMANA? Thank you, but I had to let you know of KAVARUGANDA’s inadmissible behavior in my trial.

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

But… KAVARUGANDA also claimed that you were working on behalf of someone else. If that is true, who is that person? Please tell the R.T.L.M. listeners.

Speaker: Gustave

Well… I am not aware of this person KAVARUGANDA is talking about. He is simply scared, because he knows that there is convincing evidence against him. He personally said yesterday that he knows someone else who might kill me. If at all I am killed, KAVARUGANDA must be held responsible, unless he identifies this person, with sufficient evidence, if he knows the person. He must also give an explanation on this sufficient evidence, if he knows the person. He must also give an explanation on this murder plot and this alleged assassin. If he cannot give an explanation, he must be prosecuted, because those are his own allegations. KAVARUGANDA has violated the law on several occasions, and I am not the only person who has unfairly suffered the consequences. If, based on all these facts, he was asked to give an explanation over the radio or before a court of law, would he be able to defend himself? Could he, by any chance, be in possession of another law different from the one we have?

Proof of his malice and violation of the law lies in his refusal to reply to the petition I filed, to the three summons served to him by the prosecution of the Court of filed, to the three summonses served to him by the prosecution of the Court of Appeal… [sigh] … whereas that body is competent to handle even cases involving the Head of State and other high-ranking personalities in the same category. Why did he fear to go there? It is wrong for him to pretend to be above the others. Nobody is above the law! And those summonses should have made him understand that fact. But he has refused to see reason because he is scared, because of the serious mistakes he committed during his long judicial and administrative career. He has started panicking because his numerous blunders have been unearthed. KAVARUGANDA’s claims are unfounded; let him produce the facts that will help identify that person. Personally, I cannot affirm the existence of someone I do not know. Since he is the one who said it, he must show us that person and produce evidence to that effect.

KAVARUGANDA’s behavior is scandalous, and some other people can confirm this! We have unearthed everything he has done during his judicial career. He has committed several blunders right from his start in the Public Prosecutor’s Office up to his appointment as President of the Court of Cassation, and he is well aware of this. That is why, by the way, he is trying to dodge my petition so that people do not know that I was the first person to discover his mistakes. Thank you.

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

I thank you too. We are listening to… your radio R.T.L.M., the independent radio of the land of a thousand hills. The time in our studios is 9.26 a.m. … 9.26 a.m. in the studios of R.T.L.M. The music is beautiful but one cannot live on music alone; man cannot live on music alone. He can also live on … good news. Right here, we have some sad news. It is an announcement from the Burundi Embassy in Rwanda. The Burundi Embassy in Rwanda informs those who would like to join the Burundians at this moment of grief, following the death of the Burundian Head of State, the late President Melchior NDADAYE and other martyrs of democracy, that a condolence book has been opened in the office of Kigali Urban the office of Kigali Urban prefecture.

Those who wish to sign the condolence book may go there any day starting from Tuesday 30th November at 3.00 p.m., up to 5th December, … because the funeral for these dignitaries is scheduled for, if possible, the 6th in Bujumbura. … actually, the security situation in Burundi is not very clear. In any case, the funeral for the late President NDADAYE and other matters of democracy in Burundi is scheduled for Monday the 6th.

The other announcement is from the chairman of the Interahamwe in Nyamirambo secteur in PVK. He invites all the Interahamwe residing in that secteur to a meeting on Saturday 4th December at exactly 3 p.m. In other words, tomorrow … The meeting will be held at the usual venue and, given the importance of the matters to be discussed everybody is invited to attend. The invitation came from the chairman of the Interahamwe for Nyamirambo secteur.

Another announcement is about a public auction. The bailiff of the Court of Appeal of Kigali informs the public that in the execution of judgment No. RC [sic] 17.087/91 made by the Court of Appeal of Kigali, which became res judicata and condemns Sylvestre RWAMURANGWA to payment of damages to Evariste MUSENGIMANA, as well as court fees, a house belonging to Sylvestre RWAMURANGWA situated at Gikondo, Kigali Urban prefecture, Kicukiro commune, will be sold by public auction.

The house file number is 6030309. The house file number is 6030309. The Bourgmestre of Kicukiro commune issued a public announcement on 23 January 1993, to the effect that the house belongs to Sylvestre RWAMURANGWA. The public auction will take place on Sunday 12th December, at 10 a.m. N.B.: A proportional tax of 6% to be paid to the Treasury shall immediately be deducted from the proceeds of the sale. The auction will take place on Sunday. Those interested in this house are free to go and buy it.

Let us have another announcement before we listen to some music: The interim chairman of the IMKAR (Rwanda Christian Youths’ Association), Kigali section, invites all the members to an extra-ordinary general meeting due to take place on 11 December starting at 9 a.m., at the Association’s office in Kacyiru, opposite Kimicanga. The IMKAR regions of Gikondo, Nyamirambo, Kigali-Ville, Gisozi, Mwaba Ugibagi [sic], Shyorongi and Mugambazi are all invited. Praise Jesus! The announcement is signed by Jérôme BERETE, interim chairman of IMKAR, Kigali section.

You are still tuned to the free radio R.T.L.M., broadcasting from Kigali. The time now is 9.31 a.m. In a short while, we shall bring you some interesting news from Amahoro Hotel, the headquarters of the United Nations forces, where the Secretary, rather the representative of the U.N. Secretary General Mr. BOOH BOOH, the Cameroonian BOOH BOOH, will be addressing a press conference to apprise us of the situation. We do not know what he is going to say … he might also surprise us by saying that he does not know the murderers of those Mutara people. That would be incredible! But maybe that is not what he is going to say, because he is a diplomat. He might say something else … we shall bring it to you in a while. Let us now try to go there.

Stay tuned to R.T.L.M. radio: sensational news, superb music and excellent programs which, moreover, won’t make you giddy.

End of Side A

Side B

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI, Editor-in-Chief of R.T.L.M.

…and he said: “it exploded in a place where a lot of pupils had gathered. As I was driving a taxi, I was not able to know whether any of the pupils died or were injured,” In any case, a mine has just exploded in Taba commune. Let us wait for a report from our R.T.L.M. friends in Gitarama. But for those of you who listened to … Radio Rwanda this morning, you heard the explanations given by the director of ELECTROGAZ, regarding power cuts. People living in Kimihurura were complaining: “We feel that ELECTROGAZ is unfair to us. Usually, there is a time-table for the allocation of power and we were thus able to know on which days we have power and on which ones we do not.” And the Kimihurura people added: “We have had no power since Sunday; the food stored in our refrigerators is going bad.” And the R.T.L.M. listeners added: “It is not possible. There is no electricity. You know most of the people like to connect their radios to the mains. Now it is impossible, ELECTROGAZ must come to our rescue, Let them give us power on the usual days and let them stop being unfair to us. Things are really hard for us.”

So, if anyone in charge at ELECTROGAZ is listening, let them at least try to follow their schedule. We know the problem; we know that Ntaruka power station was damaged and that there is not enough electricity. However, there should be a more equitable allocation of the little that is available in all the neighborhoods, in such a way that you do not have a situation whereby some enjoy it while the others are crying.


…your radio, R.T.L.M., the independent radio, would like to inform those who have just joined us that we shall be playing you classical and religious music because here at R.T.L.M., we are mourning; we sympathize with the Burundians in the funeral of the late President Melchior NDADAYE.

Continue to listen to classical and religious music … I would like to announce that the late NDADAYE was brutally murdered. Those who were able to see his body on television yesterday witnessed that. I cannot watch those images again; that was really too much. Actually, his brain was removed, his heart was pulled out, and his head was smashed, to the extent that the missing parts had to be filled with cotton wool. His chest was also shattered. Let us not talk about it anymore, what is done is done. However, some have compared NDADAYE’s death to “a seed that is thrown in the soil to die and rot, but which later germinates and grows into a massive tree.”

Some people say that NDADAYE died for the cause of democracy in Burundi. It is now evident that NDADAYE was killed by a group of Tutsi extremists from Bururi, but the other Tutsis in the Burundian army who just watched as this crime was being perpetrated are also in a way responsible, for they committed the offence of “failure to assist a person in danger.” On our part, we want to make it clear that NDADAYE, NDADAYE, as a savior, a savior slain for the cause of democracy … is a martyr of democracy and we think the Hutu-Tutsi relations will follow a new course, following NDADAYE’s death. This is a new problem that has just been introduced and, in my opinion, the relations between Hutus and Tutsis will have to change.

We also think that the foreign nations that pretended to bring democracy to Africa by introducing this system of elections must learn from this experience. I remember after NDADAYE’s death, Museveni, the Ugandan President, the man who assisted the Inkotanyi, said: “That shows that democracy does not stop at elections. Maybe democracy should take another form in Africa.” That is the situation in Burundi. President NDADAYE’s funeral is scheduled to take place today. In principle, the ceremony was scheduled to start at 8 a.m.; I am not listening to Radio Bujumbura at the moment but, in principle, the funeral was supposed to start at eight.

I was telling you that NDADAYE can be compared to a seed that dies, drops to the ground and dies, and then germinates and grows into a huge tree. I was saying that NDADAYE is a martyr of democracy in Burundi. If my technician is listening, I would like him to give us some religious and classical music. And now, for those of you who are music lovers, you know a piece of classical music entitled “The Messiah,” by Handel. I would like you to listen to it. As for me, I affirm that NDADAYE is a martyr. I would compare him to the messiah, which in French means “savior,” the savior. I would therefore like to play you Handel’s “The Messiah.” You know it is a very long piece that lasts six hours, I think, but I want you to listen to just a little bit of it so that you can see that NDADAYE is a true savior of democracy, a martyr of democracy. Let us listen to a piece from Handel’s Messiah, number 3, the last part. We shall then continue after that.

…that today, your radio joins the Burundians in their grief on the occasion of the burial of the late Melchior NDADAYE and his colleagues. The mass started at 8:45 a.m. The mass has already started; they are now at the homily and the celebrant is Bishop Joachim of Gitega.

During this ceremony, the first speech will be delivered by Sylvestre NTIBANTUNGANYA, the Burundi Minister of Foreign Affairs and Acting President, that is to say, the man who replaced NDADAYE as the leader of the FRODEBU party. The next person to speak will be Mrs. Sylvie KINIGI, Prime Minister of Burundi, followed by Pie NDADAYE, late Melchior NDADAYE’s father. Rwanda … grieves with the Burundians on the occasion of the funeral of the late President NDADAYE and his colleagues. The Rwandan delegation is lead by Dr. Théodore SINDIKUBWABO, the Speaker of the C.N.D. (National Assembly) and is composed of ten members of parliament from our National Assembly, the C.N.D. Among the members of the delegation is Minister Félicien GATABAZI of MINITRAPE (Ministry of Public Works and Energy) and the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Mr. Anastase GASANA. Those are, therefore, our representatives at the funeral of the late President Melchior NDADAYE. Among other dignitaries present are the Prime Minister of Uganda and the Prime Minister of Zaire, Faustin MBILINDWA.

We wish to remind you that in all, eight bodies will be buried. These are the bodies of the President of Burundi, Melchior NDADAYE, of the Speaker of the National Assembly, of the Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, of the Minister of the Interior, of the Chief of Intelligence Services of Burundi, of the Governor of Kirundo who was assassinated recently; as well as the bodies of two ladies, one of them was the wife of the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the other being a lady who was visiting that family.

A point of clarification: those who are watching the ceremonies on television have told us that they noticed the presence of BAGAZA. Contrary to what Noel had told us earlier, BAGAZA is present at the function! … I would like to announce that the R.T.L.M. grieves with our Burundian brothers, on the occasion of the burial of the late President Melchior NDADAYE. I told you that many Rwandans are in grief following Melchior NDADAYE’s death … I have already read you a poem by a teacher at the EPA… I am now with Mrs. Jeanne Dominique UWAYEZU, a resident of Remera in Kigali, who told us her feelings: “Today, I learnt that the R.T.L.M. is mourning with the Burundians. I love this radio, and I would like to tell you how I feel about the death of the late Melchior NDADAYE.” I will ask Mrs. Jeanne Dominique UWAYEZU to speak to the R.T.L.M. listeners about the funeral of the late Melchior NDADAYE which is currently taking place in Burundi.

Speaker: Jeanne Dominique UWAYEZU, from Remera:

The poem I composed for you is entitled: “The Incomparable has just gone back.”

Rwandans say that:
“This world is ungrateful,
And that too much goodness causes problems.”
Let me talk about him, he deserves it.
He did a good job. May he live a long life,
But his death was not in vain.
Because he leaves behind a legacy,
In Burundi and elsewhere.
And we all say in one voice, “NDADAYE is our hero.”
The sun had just risen in Burundi,
The stars were shining over Burundi,
There was light over Burundi,
But within no time,
Rwanda heard the sad news,
The Incomparable had just gone back.
The insatiable blood suckers,
Shamelessly and fearlessly,
Have committed the unspeakable,
And have taken away the hero of valor, Who had found the spring,
Of peace and democracy.
He has just gone back,
The Incomparable.
After killing the carriers of the weapon of democracy,
These criminals, Full of shame,
Refused to listen to the people,
Who were demanding the remains of their heroes,
To give them a respectable burial.
They preferred throwing them,
In graves like those of criminals.
And the opportunists started dancing,
And drinking to their full.
They brought down the great hero,
Thereby destroying the chances,
Of the majority of the Burundians.
They had elected him in open daylight.
He was seen in Burundi and elsewhere.
He had demonstrated courage and devotion,
Giving all his energy.
And now that is what he received in payment.
NDADAYE is a victim of his goodness.
He freed MBONIMPA,
A known malicious Tutsi.
He welcomed BAGAZA,
Who was going to die in exile,
And now this is how he shows his gratitude.
NDADAYE was mistaken about BIKOMAGU,
And elevated him to the position we all know,
And now this is his reward.
But “God’s vengeance takes time,”
God who rules over the holy places.
Teach us from today,
That we are one people,
That NDADAYE’s origin,
Is not different from that of BAGAZA or Kagame.
Death does not spare anyone,
And everything has an end.
It is true that the intelligent listen to advice.
They have decapitated FRODEBU,
But perhaps initiated its awakening,
Because the enemy has been identified.
“And a known danger is half averted.”
They should not believe that NDADAYE is dead.
His blood has been spilled,
In order to free his ideals,
And those of FRODEBU,
And to renew them,
To widen them, and to spread them.
Wisdom and abnegation,
Intelligence and harmony,
Courage and purity,
Beauty and clear-sightedness,
Zeal and honesty,
Were the hallmarks of NDADAYE,
And I say: “the Incomparable has just gone back.”
I appeal to the other nations,
To come to the rescue of the weeping youth,
The old men with their hoarse cries,
The displaced young girls,
The wandering old women,
The men who are brutally murdered,
And I say again: Oh! God, stop the cries of the misunderstood babies.”
NDADAYE has just left,
To his credit,
The challenges addressed to the Himas,
He has left with majesty and grandeur,
To heaven in the Lord’s house,
Where he will no doubt have the right to stay.

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

All of you friends who are listening, I ask you to join me in congratulating Jeanne Dominique UWAYEZU who has just read us that poem. You must have noticed that it was composed with talent and that it expresses feelings of grief and pain. Join me in thanking Jeanne d’ Arc UWAYEZU who came to the studios of R.T.L.M. to read us that poem. Let us continue listening to sad music and we wish to inform you that R.T.L.M. is mourning alongside the Burundians.

…let us again talk about the funeral of the late Melchior NDADAYE, who was the President of Burundi. Those who saw his body cannot get over it; they have no words to describe … Those who saw the body on television and those who were able to see it personally in Bujumbura saw that his brain and heart had been ripped out and his genitals cut off. We wish to remind you that the late Melchior NDADAYE was assassinated by soldiers. Those soldiers could have shot him, or killed him in another manner. Nobody knows whether he was tortured or mutilated before or after he was killed. In any case, they treated him in a savage and inhuman way; and some people even say that his killers removed his brain, heart and genitals as offerings to ancestral spirits. Therefore, if in Burundi, in Africa, people still practice such rites, then we are still backward and those of us who thought that Africa was developed, have been deceiving themselves.

To us, removing a man’s brain, heart and genitals is incomprehensible. If it is not a question of inhuman savagery, it must be madness. You are certainly aware that the environmentalists, those people who advocate for the protection of the environment, if the PECO people are listening, maybe they might have to say something on this subject, are opposed to the killing of a chicken, a goat or a cow after torturing them. They say that: “If an animal must be used as food for a human being, it must be killed without being tortured.” Therefore, if goats and chickens must not be tortured, then a man should definitely not be tortured, and even more so, if that man is a Head of State. To us, what happened in Burundi is scandalous.

We told you that his brain, heart and genitals were removed. Some people are even saying that his fingers, arms and several other organs were ripped off. So, when R.T.L.M. announced that … NDADAYE’s body was missing, some people thought we were joking. But the truth is that the body was missing, except that the journalist who made the report did not make himself clear. Actually, the body was then in the cold room of the brewery in Bujumbura. When it came to burying the body, they said to themselves: “We cannot show the body to the public in such a bad state.” They then removed it from where it was and took it to fit it with artificial limbs like arms and other organs, so that they it was and took it to fit it with artificial limbs like arms and other organs, so that they could be able to dress it. It is true, therefore, that the body was at one point removed from the cold room to be fitted with artificial limbs so that the public would not see a shapeless body, but our journalist was not able to explain all that. It is true therefore that the body was removed from the cold room at the brewery in Bujumbura where it was being kept.

Those who listened to R.T.L.M. were told that we dispatched our journalist Kantano HABIMANA. He will be back this evening or tomorrow, depending on the length of his interview with BIKOMAGU and any other possible interviews he may be able to secure. When a journalist goes somewhere, he does not limit his reporting to a particular issue; he is free to make contacts and report on other issues. He will therefore be back this evening or tomorrow and he will be in a position to give us the details of his report. I was able to talk to him on the telephone and he gave me a brief description of the situation. Those who did not hear him yesterday can listen to him now.

Kantano, can you describe to us the situation in Burundi yesterday? Kantano, you attended the funeral of the late NDADAYE and his colleagues, can you tell the R.T.L.M. listeners how the ceremony went, and what the atmosphere was like?

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

It is true, GAHIGI. In deciding to overturn the democratically elected authority and plunge it into a blood bath, the clique of Tutsi soldiers never imagined that things would go this far. This can be seen today. It is really sad. First of all, a quick reminder: in the night of 20 October 1993, His Excellency President NDADAYE chaired a Cabinet meeting which went on until 9 p.m., without minding the on-going rumors of a possible coup d’état. At around midnight, some criminals grabbed him and took him to the parachute commando barracks near Bujumbura. He was taken along with his wife Laurence NDADAYE. … Laurence NDADAYE will never forget her husband’s last words. He said: “Let us agree on all that you want, but remember your [country] Burundi and your families and do not spill blood.” That was not possible; they went ahead and spilled blood, to the extent that on that day, Let me remind you of the people who were killed that day: Melchior NDADAYE, Poncien KARIBWAMI, Speaker of the National Assembly, Jules RIMAZUBUTE, a Tutsi, who was deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, Juvénal NDAYIKEZA, Minister of the Interior, Richard NDIKUBWAMI, Chief of Intelligence, as well as the Governor of Kirundo, Déogratias BIZIMANA. The latter did not die that night, but was also murdered. [sic] Others who died were Mrs. Sylviane KATABASHINJA, wife of Dominique BARUMPOZAKO, and Mrs. Ezediya NSHIMIRIMANA, wife of Sylvestre NTIBANTUNGANYA, the Minister of the Interior [sic].

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

Eh! You have just given us a brief summary of what happened; what is the situation today?

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

Well, today, ah! Hat … GAHIGI, the situation in Bujumbura today could be described as festive, … well, a sad feast. The sad ceremonies started yesterday at the FB stadium, where the remains were put on display. The FB is a small stadium here in Bujumbura. The eight bodies lay in closed caskets. From morning, the public filed past the bodies to render their last homage to the dead.

I arrived there at about 4 pm, I also went to render my last homage to the dead and I attended the mourning ceremonies at the stadium. Many dignitaries, residents of Bujumbura and foreigners, came to the stadium to render their last homage to the eight deceased.

There were many invited guests at the Regina Mundi cathedral at 9.30 a.m. this morning. The Rwanda delegation was composed of Mr. Théodore SINDIKUBWABO, the Speaker of the C.N.D., the Rwanda National Assembly, and several members of Parliament. The Government was represented by two Ministers: Félicien GATABAZI of MINITRAPE [Public Works and Energy], and Anastase GASANA of Foreign Affairs. All the eight bodies were inside the Regina Mundi cathedral. The church became too small to accommodate all of them: it was the first time so many caskets were brought there at once. There were attempts to align them, but there was still not enough room. The mass was celebrated by the Bishops and others [sic]. Catholic and Protestant songs were sung in succession. Mrs. NDADAYE wept and tried in vain to wipe her tears, as the Protestants sang the song: “We shall meet in heaven, pilgrims.” She kept on weeping while their youngest daughter who did not know what was happening, wanted to suck at her mother’s breast and the photographers continued with their job…

When the mass was over, the congregation left the cathedral, the bodies were placed in vehicles and the cortege left for the palace … the residence of the late President NDADAYE. Crowds clad in tee-shirts bearing the words “FRODEBU, Melchior NDADAYE, martyr of democracy,” … lined the streets all along the way. There were multitudes, … multitudes of people, aligning the pavements. Some were in grief, others were weeping. One needed a lot of courage, Among the speeches made at the burial, which took place in the compound of the Presidential palace, … by the way, the presidential guard soldiers had taken positions with their arms and ammunition on the upper floor [of the palace]. That is where the burial ceremony started, … It is difficult for me to describe the unfolding of the ceremony, because it was a complicated one: some people brought wreaths, others were weeping, soldiers were moving up and down … One of the people who spoke at the ceremony was Pie NDADAYE, the late NDADAYE’s father, who was accompanied by his wife. He said: “My son died for democracy. You too must fight for democracy so that you do not lose it, otherwise my son will have died for nothing.” Next came Sylvestre NTIBANTUNGANYA, the elected chairman of FRODEBU, who said: “Goodbye NDADAYE. You have left men behind you. One NDADAYE has been killed, but it will not be possible to kill all the NDADAYE’s.” The most moving part of his speech was when he said: “Goodbye as well to you, my wife.” Then he broke down in tears. GAHIGI, he started weeping all of a sudden, then he wiped his tears. As the saying goes: “the tears of a man…”

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

We even saw his left rib, … journalists have eyes everywhere!

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

Uh huh.

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

Is it true that his brain and heart were ripped out? Were you able to ask questions on that issue, since you were there?

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

The truth is, GAHIGI, the truth is, … after he was killed, according to what I was told, they are alleged to have tried to fulfill an ancestral ritual. Some of them are alleged to have said: “He was an intelligent man, supposing we removed the brain and used it in ancestral rituals so that no other Hutu can ever be as intelligent?,” or “we can also be as intelligent as he was.” Then, … they actually carried out rituals relating ancestral spirits; some people do practice that type of thing, but what we said is true: he was killed in a horrible way. If you had seen his groin, if you had seen what it looked like below the belt, you would not have believed your eyes! GAHIGI, it is true they performed some ancestral rituals after killing him. He was mutilated.

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

Eh? …

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

People do not want to talk about it, because it is rather disgusting.

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

As we said, a wise man keeps his eyes open.

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

Did you see members of FRODEBU wearing tee-shirts?

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

Could you also have seen some UPRONA members, and those of affiliated parties? Kantano HABIMANA:

Yes, GAHIGI. In reality, the UPRONA members were not nearby … They came to attend, but they kept very far from the route used by the cortege. Well, in any case, people were telling me: “those are UPRONA members.” They avoided meeting the FRODEBU members because of the rumors of possible troubles that were circulating. So, they kept their distance, but it is true that members of UPRONA were present. Every Tutsi here is considered a member of UPRONA. Indeed, they were watching from a distance and this attitude raised some concern; one could think of some sort of mistrust.

Speaker: Gaspard GAHIGI

In your opinion, for the Hutus of FRODEBU to have been the only ones to attend this ceremony from close range, could that have been a sign of an ethnic problem?

Speaker: Kantano HABIMANA

Er… GAHIGI, actually, what is sad is… for us the educated, … since we are the ones looking for power, we should feel ashamed and think about it. For example, among the members of the Tutsi family of Jules BIMAZUBUTE, the deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, one could see some Hutus. For example, his grand children, his in-laws… [sigh] … Alright, and among the members of the families of the Hutus who were murdered, one could see some Tutsis, such as the daughters-in-law or others. As a matter of fact, all the ethnic groups were represented. But the truth is, … the ethnic problem is obvious. By the way, someone has just told me that when it was announced that the FRODEBU delegation was going to lay wreaths on the casket of the late NDADAYE, some high-ranking members of the UPRONA discretely made signs at each other. You can see very well that the ethnic problem was evident. And then thereafter, here at the Meridien Source of the Nile Hotel, … the Hutu members of the government immediately held a meeting and…

End of Tape.