Genocide ideology still present among the elderly – CNLG

Efforts to fight and eliminate discrimination and genocide ideology tendencies are still undermined by older Rwandans who are yet to let go of the negative dogma due to various historical reasons, the Executive Secretary of the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide (CNLG), Dr Jean-Damascene Bizimana, has said.
Executive Secretary of the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide (CNLG), Dr Jean-Damascene Bizimana. File
Executive Secretary of the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide (CNLG), Dr Jean-Damascene Bizimana. File

Efforts to fight and eliminate discrimination and genocide ideology tendencies are still undermined by older Rwandans who are yet to let go of the negative dogma due to various historical reasons, the Executive Secretary of the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide (CNLG), Dr Jean-Damascène Bizimana, has said.

Bizimana noted that some parents were reportedly teaching their children of ethnical ideologies in their homes and this undermines the efforts to create a one Rwandan identity but instead creates the transmission of ethnicity to the young people.

He noted that more efforts were required, especially in teaching the history of Rwanda and emphasizing that it could go a long way in informing people about the genesis of ethnicity which led to the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi that claimed over a million lives.

"If nothing is done to engage these elderly people—most of whom teach their children of this ideology to children—we risk having genocide ideology tendencies transmitted to the next generation.”

Bizimana was addressing a consultative meeting which brought together senators, MPs, some cabinet members, governors, as well as heads of some public institutions whose mandate includes follow-up on the implementations of the principles. The event was held last week at Parliament.

In 2003, close to 10 years after the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, a new Constitution was adopted—which was later amended in 2015—and it constituted the fundamental principles that seek to, among others, fight the ideology of genocide and dictatorship, strengthen and promote national unity and reconciliation, build a state governed by the rule of law and based on respect for fundamental human rights, develop human resources, fight ignorance, promote technological advancement and the social welfare of Rwandans.

Rwanda committed to conform to some six fundamental principles, including fighting ideology of genocide and all its manifestations; eradication of ethnic, regional and other divisions and promotion of national unity.

Jean Nepomuscene Sindikubwabo, the chairperson of the Senatorial Standing Committee on Political Affairs and Good Governance, told The New Times that during a recent countrywide consultation, the committee found out that some of the fundamental principles are either ignored or unconsciously upheld.

This, he said, has rendered the basic principles little-known to the masses consequently undermining the basis upon which they were designed.

The meeting was called to engage all stakeholders on how best to promote fundamental principles among Rwandans.

Participants observed that, “more effort” is needed in not only tackling genocide ideology locally but also curbing down on genocide deniers who continue to promote revisionism especially through various mediums consequently undermining unity and reconciliation agenda.

“The presence of those that promote genocide denial and ideology in various places across the world has hindered the progress of unity and reconciliation of Rwandans,” the meeting underscored in a statement.

Among the resolutions adopted at the gathering was to “put more effort in creating international collaborations that would partner with Rwanda in combating genocide ideology and denial  and well as bring Genocide perpetrators to justice.”

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

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