Perplexing Moments In The Shadows Of April


I arrive in Rwanda after traveling hours on end. What a contrast! From a city defined by gutters to a stunningly clean city that brings good thoughts to mind. What I had in sight was well worth waiting for. “This is going to be more than an Easter holiay.It is going to be a memorable sojourn,” I thought to myself.
With warm regards from passersby, I check into a motel to take a nap. “bump!boop!bu……mp!,” a hard knock at my door early the following morning.
“Kooti kachacha,” a peculiar voice projected through my drowsy mind. “Is this a salute or am hallucinating,” I stayed in wonder. With a baffled perception , I called the reception of the motel and I was told that we have to gather as residents of Kigali for a plenary talk.Oh!How excited I was. It was time for me to tour. So I get out of the motel only to join an odium crowd that was sprinting in one direction and then all the walking came to a standstill and people sat down on the ground. I ignorantly followed the trend. Then came a cuffed half dressed man from the left side of the crowd. I speculated this as a play to mimic the Easter times but I was wide of the mark.
“Habyarimana Simon! Who did you slay?” a chubby woman dressed in black asked stridently. At this juncture I still presumed it was an act. Amidst the mystification, I turned to my neighbors to clear the curiosity but all in vain, their necks seemed to be too stiff to turn and give me a minute to talk to them.
“I killed Nimusiima, Muhima…”
“And where did you bury them?”
“I concealed them on the ground where Villa motel is built. They are buried under the floor of room 8.”
“Who did you allies with in this act?” The two subjects of focus to the crowd continued talking conversely.
Then the crowd stood at once and mummers are all I could hear because I couldn’t comprehend the native language. At this moment, my so called tour was so bleak. The crowd then dashed to the motel I had checked in. A strong bodied man entered the motel and opened my room.
“Excuse me! That’s my room. I think it would be polite of you to ask for permission from me before you access it.” I shouted out from the small crowd of the onlookers but all I received were uncouth stares. A group of men joined him and they dug the floor filling my luggage with dust. After a while, an obnoxious breeze of stale air filled the atmosphere as the men pulled out three decayed cadavers from the ground.
“So they have been looking for artifacts for their museum.” I guessed in mind.
“But why would cadavers be buried under a motel?..” more and more questions streamed through my mind. This had already seized to be an act, it was reality. Having thrown the cadavers on a huge track, the men departed from the motel and the crowd dispersed.
“Alas!” corpses had been dug out of my room. I was so terrified. I immediately packed my luggage even though it was stinking terribly. I had never been petrified and perplexed like this before. It felt like I was about to turn into a psychiatric case any time soon.
After a long while of struggling, a young man walked to me and spoke to me in English. What a relief this was! He offered to help me out of my confused state and took me to the bus station. All I wanted was to abscond from that Rwanda before anything worse could happen. While I waited for the bus, the young man who had helped me told me that everything was happening that way because it was the month of April. The month when Rwanda went through a genocide and the events that had just happened were a testament to the genocide. What I thought as a harmonious holiday turned out to be a horrific moment. How I wish I had known of these happenings before I decided to go to Rwanda!



Namwase A S

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