Anti-genocide clubs 'key to fighting Genocide ideology'

The ‘Never Again’ or anti-genocide clubs have been instrumental in fighting Genocide ideology in schools, according to teachers.

The ‘Never Again’ or anti-genocide clubs have been instrumental in fighting Genocide ideology in schools, according to teachers.

A survey conducted in 2006 by a parliamentary commission indicated that 13 per cent of all schools in Rwanda had the problem of Genocide ideology.

The findings cited parents, neighbours, teachers and headmasters as the architects of Genocide ideology among youth in schools.

Genocide ideology was spread in schools through school books bearing speeches of genocidal leaders, according to the survey.

But, in separate interviews, teachers from various schools said anti-genocide ideology clubs have helped improve relationships among students.

Dieudonne Mbonigaba, a teacher of English at Wellspring Academy, and former leader of an anti-genocide club during his secondary studies, said the clubs have been effective in checking Genocide ideology and fostering reconciliation.

Education plays a significant role in any given society. It can either prevent conflict or escalate it.

Modeste Kayonga, the headmaster of Ecole Secondaire de Gafunzo (ESGA) in Nyamasheke District, said anti-genocide clubs teaches students how Genocide ideology was spread and how it can be eliminated.

“Previously, Genocide ideology was openly taught to youths in schools. Tutsi were discriminated against in schools and public service. As teachers and parents, we remind the students, when they gather in their clubs, about the history of the country and their role in the fight against Genocide ideology at schools and outside of schools,” Kayonga said.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

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