The Rwandan youth have been urged to extensively read and write books about the Genocide against the Tutsi, to know more about it and fight its denial from an informed perspective.
The call was made during the second edition of Café Littéraire on the Genocide and its ideology, an annual event organised by the National Commission for the Fight Against the Genocide in partnership with Kigali Public Library.
This is the second session to be held as part of the 23rd commemoration of the Genocide against the Tutsi.
Like the previous one, the event held at Rwanda Revenue Authority headquarters’ main auditorium was officiated by First Lady Jeannette Kagame.
Mrs Kagame said that the country’s leadership has done all it could to reconcile people and that coexistence has been proven possible
The event featured authors Esther Mujawayo and Yann Gwet who wrote and published about the Genocide against the Tutsi, young professionals, youth from different universities, among others, to discuss about writing and research as means to fight the genocide ideology.
Mujawayo, a survivor of the Genocide and author of “SurVivantes”, and "La fleur de Stéphanie" which are books about the Genocide, challenged the youth to recognize the difference between the past and the present and make the most of the current environment.
“First, the values were broken, women never killed before, churches were sacred but all this was scrapped during the genocide. I wondered how the youth would know that Rwanda had beautiful hills, good culture and values and decided to write,” she said.
“The seed of hatred was sown and the seed to detoxify must be sown through education. Parents should be open and tell their offsprings the truth in a clear way,” she noted.
“We have an opportunity to say “it’s possible to live”. Our parents had no chance to speak but we’ve got it. The environment is favorable, there is a platform and you should be taking advantage of that.”
Dr. Jean Damascene Bizimana, the Executive Secretary of the National Commission for the fight against the Genocide, reiterated that the youth have a big role in the fight against the genocide denial.
“We bring together writers and readers, mostly youth, for them to know the history of the Genocide. We expect them to participate in the fight against the denial of the Genocide, one of the gravest plagues we are facing today,” he said.
Students requested that this event be organized in universities and schools and Bizimana promised them to implement that so that more can have an opportunity to acquire knowledge from it.
Gwet, a columnist in Le Monde, a daily newspaper in France, said each generation must discover its mission and accomplish it and called on the youth to be shapers of a good future.
Students hailed the event, saying they are motivated to act.
“What the government is doing inspire us and the seeds being sown will certainly bear good fruits, said Jean Michel Rwibutso, a student at the University of Kigali.
“We are the future writers and for us to achieve that we need to read, do research, get ideas and get informed and then write,” said Ronald Mico, another student.Follow https://twitter.com/stevenmuvunyi