The future is in your hands – youths told

Several politicians have called on the youth to disassociate themselves from their evil-minded elders and promote the country’s image badly affected by the 1994 Genocide.The politicians, who included MP Francis Kaboneka, were on Wednesday                 addressing a gathering of young people at Amahoro Indoor Stadium.

The politicians, who included MP Francis Kaboneka, were on Wednesday                 addressing a gathering of young people at Amahoro Indoor Stadium.

Kaboneka condemned the older generation for orchestrating the Genocide, but paid tribute to another group of Rwandans who stopped the Genocide.

The Genocide was planned and carried out by  the former Government of Juvenal Habyarimana and his successors, and was brought to a halt by the former rebel Rwandese Patriotic Army (RPA) then commanded by current President Paul Kagame.

“Rwanda has had different generations; there is one that decided to lead the country to the 1994 Genocide, and another one that stopped it, and restored the dignity and rights of the victims and all Rwandans in general,” Kaboneka said.

The youthful lawmaker  added that the youth need to place the development of the nation close to their heart, and dissociate themselves with older people who continue to harbour the deadly genocide ideology.

He said a responsible young generation will give the country a better image in the international arena.

The function, which attracted hundreds of youth from around Kigali City, was aimed at commemorating the Genocide, which claimed the lives of an estimated one million Tutsis.

The event was characterized by testimonies from orphans of the Genocide, a public lecture on the Genocide ideology, speeches, and commemorative poems and songs.

The Minister of Youth, Protais Mitali, recalled the days when Rwanda was seen as a cursed nation, and alienated by the rest of the world.

He pointed out that had it not been for the massive involvement of the youth in the Genocide, the killings wouldn’t have been possible.

Mitali said the youth should keep away from genocide ideology and its promoters, adding that it was necessary to increase public awareness- especially among themselves- and to shun ideologies of hatred and divisionism.

He observed that there was still a lot to be done to eliminate the Genocide ideology, citing the existence of anonymous letters-which circulate especially in schools- that threaten Genocide survivors. Bosco Kanani, the coordinator of youth in the City of Kigali, observed that since the youth played a big role in the Genocide, they also had the responsibility to help fight the genocide ideology.

He pledged that the youth would continue to render support to Genocide survivors.

He promised that the city youth will visit Akumunigo – a Kigali neighbourhood of Genocide orphans – and help them design income-generating projects, and form cooperatives.

The youth also promised to help come up with proper plan for construction of houses for Genocide survivors.

Former Kanombe District Mayor Théogene Kayinamaryo said that while the past generation  divided Rwandans along ethnic and regional lines, the current generation should aim at nothing but the national security and reconciliation.

He called for proper maintenance of Genocide memorial sites to enable the young learn from the country’s tragic history and recommit themselves to ‘Never Again’. Kayinamaryo also strongly supported ending the culture of impunity saying that the Rwanda Genocide was different from other genocides elsewhere because both the hunted and the ‘hunters’ were speaking the same language and therefore the killers could well understand the pleas for mercy. He added that people killed their own relatives and in some cases, wives, husbands, parents or children.


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