Frodouald Karuhije saved the lives of 14 Tutsis from the communes of
Nyamabuye and Ntongwe in Gitarama, hiding them for more than a month.
He acted with determination and ingenuity, even though most of these
men, women and children were strangers. He secretly dug deep trenches
on his land, covering them with branches, soil and plants. They were
cleverly constructed and invisible to all that did not know of their
existence. Frodouald dug his first trench in the belief that his own
life would be threatened, having heard the propaganda that the RPF
³planned to exterminate all Hutus.² When the nature of the violence
became clear, Frodouald used these trenches to hide Tutsis whose
lives were under threat. Not waiting to be asked, Frodouald actually
sought them out in order to offer them a refuge.
38-year-old Frodouald, from Remera in Mukingi commune says he ³was
quite prepared to die for those Tutsis who took refuge at my place.²
His tireless efforts on their behalf are proof of his commitment.
When Phidentia Mukamwiza she arrived to join the group on Frodouald¹s
land, there was only one trench. Realising that there would not be
enough room to accommodate them all, Frodouald began digging at 9:00
p.m. and he dug all through the night until a second trench was ready
the following morning. Several survivors were surprised that this
³simple and straightforward² builder would show so much good will and
concern towards people he hardly knew. Like the others who owe their
lives to Frodouald, Phidentia will never forget him.

He is a good and courageous man. He was poor himself, but he agreed
to hide us and feed us for more than a month and a half. During the
genocide Karuhije put our needs above his own.

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