When xenophobic attacks erupted last week in Zamba’s capital Lusaka, dozens of foreigners ran for their dear life. Among the victims include Rwandan business owners.
When Police confirmed eight people had died as a result of the brutality, panic spread throughout Lusaka’s shanty suburbs.
Twenty Rwandan business owners who had been attacked, beaten and their properties looted, sought refuge at Rwanda’s High Commission.
Upon learning their safety was not guaranteed there, the government of Rwanda decided to repatriate them immediately.
Sunday evening, 13 of them landed at Kigali International airport aboard the national career, Rwandair directly from Lusaka.
They include ten individuals and a family of three. (A man and his wife with their child).
Alaphan Sindayigaya, from Rusizi district, had been in Lusaka since 2012. He told KT Press on arrival at the airport, that he has lost two shops worth Frw10 million and a car valued at Frw3million.
“Everything I had was looted and have returned without even a coin,” Sindayigaya said.
Pontient Nizeyimana who has a family in Muhima, a suburb in Kigali city, said that he had been in Zambia for one year during which he had a business worth over Frw10 million, “everything was stolen. I now have nothing.”
Jack Tutuba, in Charge of Rwanda Diaspora in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the government has promised to support them begin a new life as it arranges to help them follow up the matter with Zambian authorities for compensation.
Some of the returnees will directly join their families in Kigali while others are going to be temporarily catered for by the Ministry of Disaster Management and Refugee Affairs (MIDIMAR).
Meanwhile, Abel Buhungu, the Charge d’Affaires at the High Commission of Rwanda in Zambia, xenophobic told KT Press that the attacks had been ongoing in the past month and there had been two deaths.
Reports say Zambian residents are jealous foreigners are progressing and thus want them to leave their city.
To find an excuse, they accuse foreigners to be behind a spate of suspected ritual killings that have occurred in recent weeks, a ritual only practiced by local Zambians.
Zambian President Edgar Lungu said four people had been arrested in connection with the brutal ritual killings and apologised for the disgraceful act.
The Rwanda’s High Commission in Lusaka urged Rwandans there “to be alert and avoid unnecessary risks”.