CAF president Ahmad has sent a solidarity message to Rwandans as they mark the 24th commemoration of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi. By Bonface Osano




Ahmad has also made a personal donation of $2000 towards maintenance of the Kigali Genocide Memorial Center where the remains of over 250,000 people are interred.
“It is with sadness that I write this letter to commemorate the tragic Tutsi genocide of 1994. The loss of innocent lives of women, children and the elderly will never be erased from our minds.
“The sacrifices made to bring peace to Rwanda will continue to guide us always so that the lives of so many people never perish in vein.
“While sport and football should not serve any political purpose, we certainly believe that they can help to bring people together in harmony and peace.
“Perhaps the joy that football brings can help the people of Rwanda and the families of the victims to overcome the tragedies of the days horrible genocide, even if it’s only for a few minutes of a match.
“We wish you our most sincere hopes of development and prosperity to the Rwandan people. Please accept the assurances of our highest consideration,” Ahmad’s letter to Rwanda FA reads.
During his three-day official visit to the country last month, the Madagascan called for the memorial center to be maintained as a reminder for future generations to ensure that the genocide does not happen again.
Up-to more than a million people mainly minority Tutsi ethnic group were systematically killed by Hutus during the genocide as the world helplessly watched.
The country has since moved on a healing path with football being a big part of the process.
In 2016 Rwanda successfully hosted the CHAN – reaching the quarterfinals where they were unlucky against eventual winners DR Congo.
The country also runs a professional top division league and a domestic cup named “Peace Cup.”
The league champions Rayon Sports are on the verge of making the CAF Confederation Cup group stage for the first time after beating Costa do Sol of Mozambique 3-0 in the playoffs first leg.