Languide Ndikumasabo is a mother of four beautiful children. She lives in Muhanga, one of the districts of the southern province of Rwanda. At “Forum pour la Memoire Vigilante”, we got an opportunity to talk to her and asked her how she is living her life as refugee in Rwanda and how she got there.

The originality of this article is published by  the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience (ICSC or “the Coalition”)

“The day I decided to flee Burundi in 2015, I looked in all the rooms of my house. I was confused for I didn’t know what to take with me”, does remember Languide Ndikumasabo

The mother of four beautiful children to add: “ The road to exile being very long, I could not flee by car for fear of being arrested along the way. When I looked at the beautiful kitchen objects that I had, when I looked at the beautiful clothes, the household appliances of the house, I wanted to take them all to my unknown destination!”.

“But how should I carry them? I then decided to leave everything behind me, except one thing!”, can’t forget this discussion in her.

The history of Languide is shared between thousands of hundreds of Burundians.

“The morning of my departure for exile, I woke up my children very early and we prepared to leave”, let know the woman.

Her children’s questions were very embarrassing…

“The little children asked me where we were going, but I told them that we weren’t going far and that we would be back very soon”, said Languide.

She didn’t leave behind one thing, important for her. “My diploma!”.

“Indeed, I had worked in a laboratory for fifteen years. I told myself that once I arrived in the land of exile, I could use my diploma as a laboratory technician”, she hoped.

But things didn’t go as planned.

“I looked everywhere where I could use my diploma but in vain. Each time I was told that my diploma must have its equivalence in the host country so that I can work as a laboratory technician. Until now I have not yet received this equivalence after 7 years of exile”, she testifies.


“I then decided to shift my mind and look for something to do so I could feed my family. I started buying and selling fruits. I leave very early in the morning for the hills to buy the fruit which I then resell at the town market. I first explain to my clients the benefits of taking fruits and I realize they like to buy my fruits”, she insists.

She claims that Since she started selling these fruits, she receive small profits that help her meet some needs of her family.

“In the meantime, my children still have fruit to eat and they are healthy. I remain hopeful that one day I will return to my native country and still be able to use my diploma!”, indicates Languide Ndikumasabo.

She recommended and asked other refugees like her not to fold their arms and not to underestimate the job as longer as it can generate profits to support family members.

According to the UNHCR figures, Rwanda still hosts more than 50,000 burundian refugees.

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