Dimitrie Sissi Mukanyirigira, 50, a survivor of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi and a recently published author is launching her debut book “Do not accept to die” in Kigali, Rwanda.
The mother of five says the aim of this publication is to inspire the young generation to uphold the spirit of resilience and patriotism, drawing strength from the history of Rwanda including the Genocide, to preserve the memory and make “Genocide Never again” a reality.
”I was inspired to tell my story by my children and the young generation of Rwanda. I want them to know what exactly happened because I am a living proof that the Genocide was orchestrated and perpetrated to exterminate the Tutsi. I survived so that those who died could not be forever silenced, that their story is known and genocide and its ideology prevented and fought against” Dimitrie Sissi noted.
She added that survival comes with a responsibility to preserve the truth: “For the past few years, there has been a growing wave of denying the genocide against Tutsi; a painful but expected step in the genocide cycle done by perpetrators, their descendants and associates, and apologists.
Memoirs like my book seek to contribute to preserving the facts of what happened and sharing them with the world. I encourage fellow survivors to keep writing and documenting the truth.”
In her book, Dimitrie Sissi shares her personal story of how, as a happy 22-year-old young woman ready to graduate from high school and marry the love of her life after a very painful childhood, she saw her dreams crashing as the Genocide against the Tutsi broke out, halting every hope and ambition except for just one small but firm voice in her heart that called severally “Do not accept to die”.
“After the genocide, I struggled to find life’s meaning again but like the miraculous ways in which I had survived the imminent death in those 100 days, the urge ‘Do not accept to die’ remained. It was years after the genocide had ended that I understood its meaning and resolved to live fully. Even though we had experienced the worst possible, I understanding that living half-heartedly and in misery would be a pleasure to those who had sought to annihilate us. The best chose to honour the loved ones I lost and the country I had regained was to live with the attitude that does not accept inner death. This is my call to resilience for all especially those struggling,” she shared.
Ambassador Gasamagera Wellars of Rwanda to Angola in his foreword to Dimitrie Sissi’s book describes “Do not accept to die” as ‘the most striking testimony, the most vivid story, an everlasting monument of love, pain, resilience and hope; of all memory artefacts, of all emotional reproductions, of all attention capturing recounts’.
The official launch of “Do not accept to die” is scheduled on Saturday May 28, 2022, at the Kigali Genocide Memorial Amphitheatre from 5pm.
You can find the Book at the book shops in Kigali and online on