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01.08.2017 11:54 Age: 17 days

Man who exhibited genocide ideology during the 23rd commemoration of the Genocide against the Tutsi handed a 7 years jail term

On 31st July 2017, after hearing the two parties and finding him guilty of the crime of genocide ideology and violence against Léoncie Mugabekazi who is a genocide survivor, the Intermediate Court of Huye handed a 7 years imprisonment term and a Rwf500, 000 fine to Jean de Dieu Habimana.

The intermediate prosecution in Huye accused Habimana of separate violations against Mugabekazi during the 23rd commemoration of the Genocide against the Tutsi, destroying her plantations, terrorizing her, pronouncing harmful words against her and plotting to commit criminal acts against her.

 It is not the first time Jean de Dieu Habimana has been sentence for crimes related to the Genocide against the Tutsi. A Gacaca court had sentenced him to 12 years imprisonment but he was immediately released as the decision was taken when he had already been in jail for 13 years.

Article 3 of the law n° 84/2013 of 11/09/2013 on the crime of genocide ideology and other related offences defines the genocide ideology as any deliberate act, committed in public whether orally, written or video means or by any other means which may show that a person is characterized by ethnic, religious, nationality or racial-based with the aim to advocate for the commission of genocide or to support the genocide.  


Article 11 of the same law states that violence against a genocide survivor shall be a behaviour or any deliberate act that consists in harassing, intimidating, dehumanizing, ridiculing a person, boasting to his or her detriment, mocking, insulting him or her or destroying his or her property for the sole reason that he or she is a genocide survivor.

Article 135 of Rwanda’s penal code states that any person who commits the crime of genocide ideology and other related offences shall be liable to a term of imprisonment of more than five (5) years to nine (9) years and a fine of one hundred thousand (100,000) to one million (1,000, 000) Rwandan francs.

The decision of this court is a sign that the government of Rwanda has resolved to definitely uproot the genocide ideology and put an end to the culture of impunity to enhance unity and reconciliation among Rwandans.