I was born in Rumangabo, in Rutchuru territory, in 1972 . I am married to Christine Nyirahabimana. We have five children. I became a park ranger in 1995. My father is a ranger. As a child I always followed his every move and he advised me to join up. I was a farmer back then. My father was offered a job at Rumangabo station. Watto Wamubinja, the station chief, needed to recruit some men for his team.
I thought as my father was a ranger, and we lived at the station, it would be a good idea to apply. I discussed the idea with my father and he agreed. A few days later I found out that my application had been successful. Then I started my training. One month later, after many challenges, I joined the rangers.
This period was far from quiet. It was just over a year since the Rwandan refugees had come to Congo. They were felling a lot of trees for firewood and so on and our first mission was to prevent the refugees from destroying more of the park. Some of them were armed with rifles and others had machetes, so it wasn’t easy. We caught some of them and others ran away. We handed the ones we caught over to a militia made up of ex-FAZ personnel. The situation deteriorated still further - this was the time when the manufacture of charcoal started. In 2007 another war started, this time with the AFDL, and more refuges came. The damage to the park was immense – at one point we were losing a hundred hectares a month. It should always be a personal choice whether to join up, and my sons are free to do as they please but I would be very pleased if my sons joined the ranger service. I want to give them as much education and as much good advice as I can, and then let them choose.