The elusive but nevertheless real monster called genocide ideology has continued to dog many types of businesses, government business inclusive. It is clear that we Rwandans have to brace ourselves in other special ways in order to put our country on a firm course, because even before the ink which the Spanish Judge Fernando used to indict gallant officers who fought to liberate this country from the claws of genocidaires has dried, our own parliament is showing signs of an inexplicable need to be soft to people who are peddling this destructive ideology.
This is seen in the genocide ideology bill that the Lower Chamber of Parliament passed on Friday, and the excitement that one article, Article 13, generated. In very summary terms, the article advocates for the accuser of a person harbouring genocide ideology to serve half the sentence of the convicted person, should it transpire later that the accuser brought false information merely to get a conviction.
For members of the House who are called Honourable to insist on such measures is counter-productive. It negates the very purpose of making such a law. It intimidates; it fails to guide; it encourages perpetrators that they can serve half their sentences if ever they can find a way of proving, however infinitesimally, that the accuser, or one of the witnesses for that matter, gave conflicting evidence.
Given the resources that the Genocide perpetrators wield, what is impossible here? A small sum of money is all it needs for one to retract a piece of evidence, even if it is not the major submission; this is all it would take for the case to be revised.
No one understands better than the law makers themselves, that a bad law is just as bad as no law at all, if it defeats the reason for its promulgation. If it is a simple matter of lying under oath, or perjury in legal parlance, it is already addressed elsewhere and does not need special mention under this particular law.
Parliament should strive to make fair laws of course, but should discuss exhaustively to straighten out shoddy bills and make them better. It is true we are in reconciliation phase, but people perpetuating genocide ideology are dragging us backwards, and need to be stopped by fair means.
The country looks to parliament and the senate for guidance in this very sensitive matter.