Is Mugesera Haunted by His Grandfather’s Ghost?

Once upon a time in his childhood, Dr. Leon Mugesera, now battling a case for alleged genocide crimes, sat in front of his grandfather with his siblings listening to the old man’s words of wisdom.

Typical of all the African elders, Mugesera’s grandfather would regularly treat his grandchild with abundant fairly tales, as part of the Rwandan folklore.

That day, as the old man talked, Thadeo Ngirabatware, Mugesera’s step brother, was also listening.

Ngirabatware recalls the old man saying that, “nobody should ever kill anyone.” He warned them that the spirits of the victim would later haunt you.

Ngirabatware knows Mugesera as a very bright child in school and indeed ended up becoming successful, despite the fact that no one in his family tasted the fruits of his success.

One of his brothers, (R.I.P) built a house so that whenever Mugesera returned home, he would find a place to stay. But Mugesera rarely visited his family and whenever he came home, he would not even socialize with his siblings, Ngirabatware says.

He would leave his car about 3km away and walk home. He would immediately return to Kigali, Ngirabatware recalls. Mugesera had no reasons to build any house for himself in his home village.

In fact, his brother told KTPress that Mugesera never bought anything for his parents, “not even a goat or a cow.”

Sometime in September 1992, Mugesera returned to the village to bury his sister-in-law. After the burial ceremony, Mugesera took off and has never set foot in his village again.

Later, his family had to plead to their mayor to ask Mugesera to return to the village and take care of his ailing mother.

They say Mugesera only sent his driver to pickup his mother from the village and to get treatment in Kigali.

Before the end of 1992, Mugesera fled the country and left his mother with his family in Kigali. The wife and children joined him in exile, abandoning the mother in the house.

A family friend learnt that Mugesera’s mother had been left alone and later drove her back to the village.

That is how the village came to know that Mugesera had fled country. His family had no clue where he was living until 2012 when he was deported from Canada.

KTPress has visited Mugesera’s home village, Muhororo, in Ngororero District (formerly Gisenyi prefecture).

Some family members of the 63 year old Mugesera, who is known for his notorious speech calling for the massive killing of Inyenzi (referring to Tutsi), are still alive and actually say they miss him.

“I miss him. It is sad we aren’t together,” says Ngirabatware, who paid for his school fees because “he was a very bright student in school.”

Who knows, maybe the family’s misery should be blamed on Mugesera’s failure to heed his grandfather’s wisdom?

 

Thadee Ngirabatware 88, Mugesera's step elder brother who sponsored Mugesera's scholarship at the university.
Thadee Ngirabatware 88, Mugesera’s step elder brother who sponsored Mugesera’s scholarship at the university.

 

These two olderly men stand at a point where Mugesera delivered his controversial in 1992.
These two olderly men stand at a spot where Mugesera delivered his controversial in 1992.

 

Mugeser used to hang out at this bar (on the left)in Kabaya.
Area residents say Mugesera enjoyed beer at this bar (on the left) in Kabaya .

 

Top of the hill above these houses where Mugesera was born in 1952.
All homes in Mugesera’s village only got electricity after the Genocide.

 

In the background is the church where Mugesera was standing while delivering a controversial speech in Kabaya November 22, 1992 the hill was entirely crowded by hundreds of people.
In the background is the church where Mugesera was standing while delivering a controversial speech in Kabaya November 22, 1992 the hill was entirely crowded by hundreds of people.

 

Part of the Ku Idome centre where Mugesera used to park his car-3km from his parents' home.
Some of the buildings at Ku Idome centre where Mugesera used to park his car-3km from his parents’ home.

 

During Mugesera speech, he said he will transit Inyenzi back to Ethiopia through Nyabarongo River.
Mugesera said in his speech that he would allegedly transit Inyenzi (ethnic Tutsi) back to Ethiopia through Nyabarongo River.
Mugesera while delivering a controversial speech in 1992. He later fled the country in the same year.
Mugesera while delivering a controversial speech in 1992. He later fled the country in the same year.
In 2012 Mugesera arrived at Kigali International Hospital handcuffed after a successful deportation from Canada.
In 2012 Mugesera arrived at Kigali International Airport handcuffed after a successfull deportation from Canada.
Here Mugesera is led by Rwanda National Police to the court
Here Mugesera is escorted by Rwanda National Police to court
Dr. Leo Mugesera in Prison uniform consulting with his lawyers in court before a hearing
Dr. Leo Mugesera in Prison uniform consulting with his lawyers in court before a hearing

 

 

 




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