Home NewsInternational Senegal Inaugurates Memorial Statue to Captain Diagne Mbaye

Senegal Inaugurates Memorial Statue to Captain Diagne Mbaye

by Jean de la Croix Tabaro
2:21 am

This weekend in Dakar, Rwanda’s Ambassador in Senegal Jean Pierre Karabaranga joined the Senegalese President Macky Sall to inaugurate a memorial statue that was erected to pay tribute to late Captain Mbaye Diagne who died while saving victims of the Genocide against Tutsi in Rwanda.

Mbaye was part of the UN peacekeeping mission in Rwanda(UNAMIR) during the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi where more than a million Tutsi were massacred within three months-April and early July by militia interahamwe and the government soldiers.

He was killed on May 31, 1994 while on duty to save the innocent civilians who were being killed for belonging to an ethnic group they had not chosen at birth.

“Together with his colleagues, he(Mbaye) saved thousands of Tutsi in the capital Kigali,” said Ambassador Karabaranga at the launch of the memorial that was proposed by President Macky Sall and inaugurated  by the later on March 22, 2024.


“We shall always remember him as a kind and exceptionally zealous person who selflessly took a decision to save lives.”

Mbaye exhibited exceptional courage where he would go meet the Genocide perpetrators that were ready for mass murder at a given place and would plead them not to kill the Tutsi. Some news suggest that in some instances he could even give the killers money so they can spare the Tutsi.

He is also said to have been able to save the children of late Prime Minister Agathe Uwiringiyimana who was killed during the Genocide by the Interahamwe following her stand against the then ruling party’s divisive politic.

At the inauguration, Macky Sall paid tribute to the exceptional soldier and said: “Rwanda never missed an occasion to pay tribute to Captain Mbaye. The Captain is our national hero who has exceptional values in our society. With his high acts in the army and exceptional qualities of humanism, he contributed highly to the prestige of Senegal through the UN medal.”

He therefore said :” For this reason, in the name of the nation, I have decided to pay tribute to this great soldier by dedicating him this memorial. May his example inspire the citizens for the greatness our country.”

President Macky Sall speaking at the launch of Captain Mbaye Diagne Memorial

Among other tributes, Mbaye was awarded posthumously with  Rwanda’s Campaign Against Genocide Medal in 2010.

On 8 May 2014, the UN Security Council created the Captain Mbaye Diagne Medal for Exceptional Courage in honour of the actions of Diagne during the Genocide against Tutsi.  His family was given the award in May 2016.

Ambassador Jean Pierre Karabaranga(L) with Senegalese officer at the launch of the tall monument

The medal will be awarded to organizations, police officers, UN staff who will exhibit exceptional acts of heroism in critical time of crisis during a UN mission.

Rwanda dedicated the week of April 7 to 13 to the national commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi-Kwibuka.

This year, Rwanda will hold the Genocide commemoration for the 30th year-Kwibuka 30.

Despite the one week national commemoration, activities to remember the victims continue for one hundred days that lasted the Genocide which was stopped by the Rwanda Patriotic Front(RPF) Inkotanyi on July 4. The date corresponds to Liberation Day.

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