EDITORIAL: Tougher measures needed in fight against Genocide ideology

Genocide survivors under their umbrella organization, Ibuka want the law on Genocide ideology to be amended to ensure tougher punishments for perpetrators of genocide ideology and related crime. The call was reiterated by Ibuka president Professor Jean-Pierre Dusingizemungu in an interview with this paper last week.

At the time the law relating to the punishment of the crime of Genocide ideology was enacted in 2008, the crime of genocide ideology attracted up to 25 years of imprisonment.

However, later when the laws were reviewed to have all punishments prescribed by the penal code, jail term on conviction of genocide ideology was reduced to 5-9 years. In light of the changing face of genocide ideology related crime both locally and on the international stage, IBUKA’s concerns should be considered.

With advancement in technology, the perpetrators of genocide ideology have also adopted sophisticated ways of committing genocide ideology related crimes.

A new law that is able to deal with the changing face of genocide ideology related crimes is critical. Like the Ibuka president noted, Genocide ideology is still a growing threat that must be confronted with more force than is being done presently.

More and better coordinated efforts, especially focusing on the young people are critical since these are the biggest target of the genocide ideology perpetrators.

This therefore necessitates the law makers to go back to the drawing table and come up with a law that puts into consideration the current realities and challenges of fighting Genocide and genocide ideology.

Besides strengthening the law relating to the punishment of the crime of Genocide ideology, more sensitization targeting the youth and key institutions like schools should be intensified.

The crime of genocide ideology is a serious crime against humanity. The penalties must equally be as serious.