French author Daniel Le Scornet believes that documenting Rwanda’s history will allow more global awareness of the problem that is genocide, to the world as a whole and for generations to come. He says this will also ease the accurate transmission of history/vision of unity, from one generation to another. In his book, ‘Si Kigali était contée’ or ‘If Kigali was a tale’, Le Scornet presents the history of Kigali, the capital of Rwanda, from its origins; way back in the pre-colonial times to the country’s independence in 1962. Kigali, having been the centre of the campaign of the genocide perpetrated against the Tutsi in 1994, the author chose to highlight its ‘resurrection’ and praises it today as one of the brightest beacons of the African continent. When writing this book, he documented Kigali’s history by compiling different testimonies and included a critical view of the circumstances, presented in somewhat poetic language. The intention was primarily to educate. According to him, there is a need to document Rwanda’s history, especially since a big part of it remains oral, hence weak to the test of time. Visiting Rwanda Le Scornet decided to visit Rwanda for the first time in 2014, and took part in the commemoration ceremonies in Bisesero, Western province, that year. The 76-year-old travelled after doing a lot of research on Rwanda’s history and the role of France in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. He believed that his travel would help him understand the role of his country and how he would encourage France to recognise its hand in the tragedy. Along with his wife, he set off for Rwanda because he wanted to help more actively on the ground. Le Scornet said he felt so welcomed by Rwandans and has since worked on different projects like the brochure of the Garden of Memory in Kicukiro among others. “I was moved and deeply touched by the stories there and continued to visit every once in a while,” he said. He went on to become part of the mobilisers who built Ecole Secondaire de Bisesero and later contributed to building a nursery school in the area in 2019. In a bid to give back, and as a sign of gratefulness for the trust and the welcome from the people of Rwanda, he decided to write a book. He expressed himself in a way he knows best, writing. On November 3, Le Scornet launched his book ‘Si Kigali était contée’ at the Kigali Public Library- where he shares about his journey in a city that welcomed him and how he was moved by the courage of Rwandans to develop regardless of the history. “Rwanda has come a long way and the world would have so much to learn from this country. However, there’s still so much need to ensure healthy transgenerational transitions through adequate education tools,” he said. This is why he is working on a paper, ‘Texte pour la jeunesse,’ together with education and history institutions in Rwanda to see how they can incorporate it into the curriculum. He appreciates the already established developments preserving the country’s history, for example, Jardin de la Mémoire/Garden of Memory, noting that such remain relevant in the current times of climate advocacy and to young people, as it is more relatable and less graphically traumatising as the usual memorials. He also commends highly the establishment of genocide memorials in different parts of the country, “as they remain a strong evidence and tool of education.” Le Scornet’s next project is to work with Avega-Agahozo, an association of Genocide widows, and write more books on the history of Rwanda. A copy of ‘Si Kigali était contée’ costs Rwf37,000. It can be found at the Kigali Public Library and the Kigali International Airport.