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French President Emmanuel Macron (L) is greeted by Rwandan President Paul Kagame at the Presidential Palace prior to a bilateral meeting in Kigali on May 27, 2021.

France Offers Tepid 'Apology' to Rwanda During Kigali Genocide Memorial Speech

In an attempt to ask for forgiveness for France's role in the 1994 Rwandan genocide, French President Emmanuel Macron has admitted that France needs to examine the truth.

France is finally moving closer to recognising its role in the harrowing Rwandan genocide that took place 27 years ago. Speaking at the Kigali Genocide Memorial, France's youngest head of state President Emmanuel Macron requested the "gift of forgiveness", but maintained the stance that France was not complicit in the events that led to the death of over 800 000 innocent Rwandan Tutsis. Rwandan President Paul Kagame has reportedly welcomed the request. However, genocide survivor group Ibuka, stated that the "apology" absolved France of taking full responsibility.


Macron reportedly stated that France had, at the time, not considered the political advise regarding the impending 1994 genocide, and instead erroneously decided to stand de facto by Rwanda's political genocidal regime. The speech by the French President had at least a singular enlightening moment, which was a step away from France's notorious political arrogance regarding its pre and post colonisation role in Africa. According to Al Jazeera, Macron said France had a duty to admit the "suffering it inflicted on the Rwandan people by too long valuing silence over the examination of the truth". The statement touches on France's alleged enabling role in the Hutu-led government genocide, which has been captured in the Netflix series Black Earth Rising.

Egide Nkuranga, the president of Ibuka, expressed his disappointment stating that Macron had not offered a clear apology but had instead retold the events and outlined where France's responsibilities lay, specifically where France forwent good moral judgement. Nkuranga further expounded that this was a much-needed step to understanding the truthful events of that year.

Read: Former Politician Ladislas Ntaganzwa Convicted for Role in Rwandan Genocide

With France's upcoming presidential election, Macron's "apology" has been met with some suspicion that it may be a political campaign to maintain business interests in Rwanda, without losing right wing voters in France. Kagame, a Tsutsi, said Rwandans could "maybe not forget, but forgive" France for its role. The "apology" comes after both countries released independent reports in March on France's role in the genocide. Rwanda maintains that France was complicit, and played an active role while France has completely absolved itself. Instead, France blames the inheritance of dangerous colonial attitudes towards Black people which "blinded" them on taking humane action during the 100 days of slaughter of close to a million Rwandans.

Macron was speaking at the Kigali Genocide Memorial where over 250 000 genocide victims are buried.

Interview

Kofi Jamar Switches Lanes In 'Appetite for Destruction'

The Ghanaian rapper and "Ekorso" hitmaker presents a different sound in his latest EP.

The drill scene in Ghana has been making waves across the continent for some time now. If you're hip to what a crop of young and hungry artists from the city of Kumasi in Ghana and beyond have been doing over the past year, then you already know about rapper Kofi Jamar.

Towards the end of November last year he dropped one of the biggest drill songs to emerge from Ghana's buzzing drill scene, the popular street anthem "Ekorso." In the December and January that followed, "Ekorso" was the song on everyone's lips, the hip-hop song that took over the season, with even the likes of Wizkid spotted vibing to the tune.

Currently sitting at over 10 million streams across digital streaming platforms, the song topped charts, even breaking records in the process. "Ekorso" maintained the number one spot on Apple Music's Hip-Hop/Rap: Ghana chart for two months uninterrupted, a first in the history of the chart. It also had a good stint at number one of the Ghana Top 100 chart as well, among several other accolades.

Even though he's the creator of what could be the biggest song of Ghana's drill movement till date, Kofi Jamar doesn't plan on replicating his past music or his past moves. He has just issued his second EP, a 6-track project titled Appetite for Destruction, and it would surprise you to know that there isn't a single drill song on it. Although drill played a huge role in his meteoric rise, he wants to be known as way more than just a drill rapper. He wants to be known as a complete and versatile artist, unafraid to engage in any genre — and he even looks forward to creating his own genre of music during the course of his career.

We spoke to Kofi Jamar about his latest EP, and he tells us about working with Teni, why he's gravitating away from drill to a new sound, and more. Check out our conversation below.

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