JEAN-BOSCO NDAGIJIMANA’s courageous move to hide Tutsis from the killers and enable them escape to safety (although into refugee life) is yet another testimony that ordinary Rwandans loved each other until bad leadership fulfilled their evil plans by executing the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
It also proves the point that it is possible for the masses to reject bad influence from bad leaders. Leadership is about pulling together for a common good. Any person in leadership position who falls short of this lacks legitimacy as a leader and must therefore be defied.
Unlike many other young people who chose to follow their leaders blindly and intentionally, Mr. Ndagijimana chose risky defiance even if he was aware of the consequences of going against the genocidal regime and its militia, the dreaded Interahamwe.
Today, history has absolved him while some of those who perpetuated the Genocide against the Tutsi can never walk with their heads straight anymore because of the shameful acts they committed against innocent people.
Never again should Rwandans ever accept to be misled or misguided into inhumane behaviour of killing each other based on the thinking of narrow-minded people who cannot reason beyond perceived narrow ethnic differences.
The lesson to be learnt here is that if only there were more Ndagijimanas in Rwanda in 1994 willing to stand up to be counted, then some of those innocent women and children would not have died senselessly.
Bravo my brother, JB. Rwanda needs people like you.
This story proves that we are first and foremost defined by our humanity. Our choices and actions are the reflection of our conscience, our minds, and our hearts. In the end, it is up to us to choose the right path. Clearly, ideology plays a role only when we choose to let it do so. And when we do not, these are the wonders that can be achieved.
Reactions to the story, “Ndagijimana, the man who risked his life to save others during the Genocide” (The New Times, February 25)