The Ministry of Education Friday urged history teachers to take the lead in the fight against the Genocide ideology. This was said during the conclusion of a one-week civic education programme, Itorero, held in Nyanza District that was attended by over 1,600 history teachers from different secondary schools across the country. Dubbed Indemyabigwi (people who nurture legends), the training was prepared in partnership with the Ministry of Education (Mineduc), Rwanda Education Board, National Commission for the Fight Against Genocide (CNLG), National Unity and Reconciliation Commission, and National Itorero Commission among others. The programme was held under the theme “Let us build quality education based on Rwanda’s heritage and culture”. While addressing the teachers, Dr Eugene Mutimura, the Minister of Education, urged them to take the lead in fight against the Genocide ideology. “We have a bitter history of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, but we should not be captives of it. Let us instead learn from it and build a better future,” he said. He continued to say that: “We want you to take the lead in fighting against its ideology by teaching unity and the truth of our history in schools and communities where you live.” This training is the first of its kind but Mutimura noted that they were going to look at possibilities of holding it every year. Previous challenges Speaking to Sunday Times, Dr Gasanabo Jean Damascène, Director General of Research and Documentation at CNLG said that teachers expressed challenges they used to face while teaching history. “During the training, teachers told us of several challenges they faced while teaching history, especially on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi,” he said. “Many told us that they are not bold enough to say ‘Genocide against the Tutsi’ because some of them had family members who killed people in 1994 and others have family members who were killed,” he added. Gasanabo also reiterated that “the training was timely and effective because teachers were taught how Rwandans were one, regardless of ethnic groups, since the beginning,” adding that: “We hope that that is what they are going to teach their students and community,” he said. Appolinaire Nizeyimana, a history teacher at Muhororo High School in Karongi District said the training had filled a gap. “Some of us feared to teach what really happened in Rwanda in 1994, and could just by pass it because of fearing to hurt those with families who were killed or who killed in the Genocide,” he said. Among the vows made by participants of Itorero Indemyabigwi include fighting against genocide, its ideology and healing its wounds; teaching and promoting NdiUmunyarwanda (I’m Rwandan) program; promoting Kinyarwanda language and teaching Rwanda’s culture and heritage.