From the east to the west, Members of Parliament are traversing Rwandan schools talking to teachers and students about the need to rid everyone of genocide ideology. This follows a suggestion from parliamentarians that both they and cabinet ministers visit schools and carry out such sensitization talks.
Vice President of the House of Deputies Polisi Denis and other MPs have been in several schools in Southern Province – schools which have the highest prevalence of genocide ideology cases amongst the student population – and stressed the need for frequent student-teacher interfacing as a way of breaking the back of the monster we are fighting. MPs Abasi Mukama and Alphonsine Mukarugema advised teachers to carry the greater responsibility since the ideology is sometimes engendered out of the historical background of the students. So did other MPs urge students in the Eastern Province to be on guard even though there are no schools there tainted by genocide ideology.
There is one bit of armour to add to the arsenal of crusading MPs in the fight: display concrete evidence to these misguided students that the social and political situation in the country prevailing now has never been better. For example there is enough to show that there is no discrimination in all social levels as it was in the past, and the best sector is education, where every student is treated equally in class, during examinations and during admissions. These are concrete things that will appeal to the youth, whose negative turns are fuelled by such fears that they will be discriminated against, as was the norm during the Habyarimana regime that acted sectarian in every sector of public life.
School administrators will also have to identify the background of students who perpetuate the negative ideology, seeing as it might be that home might be the breeding ground. Let us not fear to get the bull by the horns and specifically know the people who are recalcitrant, and maybe basing on the reasons they have for their negation to the current developments, persuade them otherwise.