Editorial: There is no pride in celebrating getting back what was yours

It was just too good an occasion for some Rwandan opposition figures to let go without taking advantage and remind the disinterested world that they still exist.

It was all about dates and their meanings to some people. July 1 is Independence Day and July 4 is Liberation Day. Both days are public holidays but only Liberation Day gets celebrated officially.

The choice seems to rub some people the wrong way and they usually want to politicize it according to “our date” and “their date”. They do the same with Genocide commemoration where people associated with the genocidal government commemorate Habyarimana’s death on April 6 yet we remember April 7 when the Genocide commenced.

But let us get back to the Independence polemic; why should we celebrated getting back what was ours in the first place? The colonialists did not do us a favour in setting us free, it was our right and it would have been a matter of time before we took the freedom by force. Kenya, Algeria, Guinea Bissau, Mozambique and Angola had shown how.

Anyway, there would be no logic in holding two national celebrations in a space of three days, and what better day to celebrate the fruits of our labour? What a better time to remember all those who sacrificed their lives so that we may live?

This debate of celebrating Independence Day is misplaced and it is a sign some of the vestiges of colonial mentality leftovers that many have failed to shed. There are better debating subjects but definitely, Independence Day is not one of them.