Songs by Simon Bikindi

Simon Bikindi was a Rwandan musician during the Genocide era. He wrote many wildly popular songs advocating ethnic nationalism, Hutu Power and continuation of the 1959 Revolution.

Nanga Abahutu (I Hate These Hutu)

The intervention of the interlocutor, Mutabazi, is marked in italics.
“Ntuza” means “Mister.”
“Abahozi” (sing. “umuhozi”) refers to foreigners living in Rwanda but not yet integrated into a clan of the country.
The term “patronage” roughly corresponds to the Kinyarwanda word “ubuhake,” referring an institution dating back to the monarchy; this patronage was based on the cow, with Tutsis often lording over Hutu farmers. Among the institutions of that period, it is the most controversial and most studied. It has been somewhat inaccurately equated with the feudalism of the European Middle Ages.

Version A

Ngirengirente (undecided) was a child
Who saddened his mother
And who was a concern of his father, dear comrades!
The deaf gave birth to deaf,
The un-anointed gave birth to the crazy,
The bush gave birth to the owl, dear comrades!
“The truth passes through the fire without burning”
And told “the truth does not hamper the relations of good neighborliness.”

Mbiwirabumva (good listener)!
Come and listen
Mbiwirabumva!
I swear to God!
I swear that I awaken God and victory, dear comrades!
I swear that I awaken the hero Rwakizima.

I hate these Hutus,
These arrogant Hutus
Who scorn other Hutus, dear comrades!
What do you, Mutabazi,
Let me say, oh Ntuza!
The anguish strongly encloses my heart!
I’ll tell you why I hate them, yes!
Let me say, oh Ntuza!
The anguish strongly encloses my heart!
I’ll tell you why I hate them, yes.
I hate these Hutus
Who deny their identity
To be Hutu, Abahozi
I hate these Hutus
Who despise each other,
Claiming that they are better than others.
And who do not share food and drink with other Hutus, dear comrades!

I hate these Hutus,
These big-bellied Hutus,
Those who merely fill their bellies,
Who like to court
And only live for patronage, dear comrades!
Can we really want to worry?
If I hate them, so much the better!

Our only bit of luck
Is that they are few among us, dear friends!
They are few people who have gone astray!
Our only opportunity
Is that they are few among us, dear friends!

Version B

Ngirengirente was a child who saddened her mother
And that was a concern for his father, dear comrades!
Also, it was said that the deaf gave birth to the deaf
That unannointed gave birth to crazy,
That the bush has given birth to the owl, dear comrades!
“The truth passes through the fire without burning,”
And, as the saying goes, “telling the truth does not hamper the relations of good neighborliness.”

O my brave!
Mbwirabumva
Come and listen
Mbwirabumva
Come and listen
That God I swear,
As I awaken the hero, dear comrades!
I swear to God
As I awaken the hero Rwakizima!
I hate these species of Hutu,
Walking blindly.
I hate these species of Hutu,
These indiscriminate species of Hutu,
Who start to make war
Without knowing the cause, dear comrades!
They tear each other apart, don’t they?
Really a catastrophe!

I hate these Hutu,
Hutu that are purchased with a single coin,
And kill a Hutu,
That kill a Hutu, dear comrades!
Yes, really!
If I hate them, so much the better!
I too…!
Our only hope
Is that they are few among us, dear friends!

Version C

The deaf give birth to the deaf,
The bush gives rise to owl, dear comrades!
“The truth passes through the fire and does not burn”
and “telling the truth does not hamper good neighborliness,” O my brave!

Mbwirabumva
Come and listen
I swear to God that I awaken the hero!
I swear to God that I awaken the hero Rwakizima!
I hate these Hutus,
These Hutus who do not remember Nzira son of Murama,
Who do not remember the way he died
And who do not remember the cause of his death.
Who does not remember what death he died, my child?
I hate these Hutus
These Hutus who do not remember asha son of Sabugabo
There in Nyanza
And who do not remember what death he died,
And who do not remember the cause of his death, dear comrades!
It is idiocy, is it not?
I hate these Hutus,
Hutu who do not remember Nyagakecuru on the chain of Mount Huye,
Who do not remember the death she died ,
Who do not remember the cause of her death, dear comrades!
Is there someone who did not remember?

I hate these Hutus,
These Hutus who do not remember,
Who do not remember this word;

There in Butare, dear comrades!
I hate the Hutus,
Hutu who do not remember
Rukara, son of Bishingwe, or Basebya, as well as Ndungutse
To Ruhengeri in the Murera,
[These Hutu] who do not remember the cause of their deaths, dear comrades!
Yes, really! My child!
These Hutus who do not remember
Rukara, son of Bishingwe,
And who do not remember the way he was hanged,
Basebya with Ndungutse,
to Ruhengeri in the Murera,
and who do not remember the cause of death, dear comrades!
The betrayal, of course!

If I hate them, so much the better!
Our luck
Is that they are few among us, dear friends.

Version D

I hate these Hutu, these arrogant Hutu, braggarts,
Who scorn other Hutu, dear comrades!
I hate these Hutus, these de-Hutuized Hutu,
Who have disowned their identity, dear comrades!
I hate these Hutu, these Hutu who march blindly, like imbeciles,
This species of naïve Hutu who are manipulated, and who tear themselves up,
Joining in a war whose cause they ignore.
I detest these Hutu who are brought to kill—to kill, I swear to you,
And who kill the Hutu, dear comrades.
If I hate them, so much the better…

Let us start in the region of Butare,
Where they like living under feudalism—
Who would blame me for that?
I hate them and I don’t apologize for that.
Lucky for us that they are few in number…

Twasezereye Ingoma ya Cyami (We Said Goodbye to the Monarchy)

The song turns into a call and response near the end; the italicized parts are responses. This song is on YouTube here.

Eeeee!
Remember the whip and the chore!
Remember the days you spent
Serving the master without remuneration
And therefore rejoice of Independence!

Chorus:
We said goodbye to the monarchy
The feudal and colonial yokes disappeared at the same time
And we got the democracy that suits us.
Come and let us celebrate the independence.

Remember the days of walking,
The many nights that you spent in difficult conditions,
Carrying tribute to the home of the head or the royal court,
At the expense of your family who had needed you
And when, exhausted, you arrive at your destination,
We were not even appreciated.
Come, let us celebrate the independence.

[Chorus]

I am very young and I did not know it
I was told and I’ve learned through reading
And when I preserved the death penalty;
It is for this reason that I look forward to independence.

[Chorus]

I pay a heartfelt tribute
Activists who were released,
Which Kayibanda in mind,
I am thinking especially Mbonyumutwa
And their valiant companions.
What we need is independence.

[Chorus]

It is said that of the many souls born
The point is the number of years.
At that time Habyarimana
Was at the head of the army.
It enjoyed peace since its birth
And always fights for that peace.
We congratulate you, proud young soldiers.
May you continue to lead the army valiantly.

[Chorus]

How many years [of independence] just passed, dear Rwandans? Twenty-five.
How many years [of independence] just passed, dear Rwandans? Twenty-five.
Young Rwandans, you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Young men, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Young girls, you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Young men, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Young Rwandans, you know how many years? Twenty-five.

How many years [of independence] just passed, dear Rwandans? Twenty-five.
Older men, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Older women, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Old gentlemen, tell them the number: Twenty-five.
Older women, tell them the number: Twenty-five.
You’ve seen these nights. Twenty-five.

Young men, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Young girls, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Older men, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Older women, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Adolescents, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Adolescents, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Young men, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Young girls, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
Young Rwandans, do you know how many years? Twenty-five.
The days are such hard to tell! Twenty-five.
You can not hear such nights! Twenty-five.
The times are so hard to tell! Twenty-five.

[Chorus]

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