The annual civic education for Rwandan youth studying from abroad kicked off yesterday with officials urging the youngsters to stick to the country’s values while in their respective host nations.
Briefing the students at Amahoro National Stadium before departing for Gabiro in Gatsibo District, Local Government minister James Musoni told the youth that the country expects them to be exemplary Rwandans.
“We want to shape your character with country’s values which we want you to stick to. It is only after you know our values that you can represent us well,” Musoni said, citing patriotism, self-reliance and integrity among the values expected to be maintained.
Aimable Manzi Nayandi, from Annamalai University, India, said there is need for Diaspora students to depict the right picture of the country’s current status abroad.
“Abroad, some unformed people still associate our country only with its dark history and in a generic manner perceive us as wild,” said Manzi, adding that this underscores the need for students to be well-versed to tell success stories.
Angel Gatete, from Ottawa University in Canada, said being at home is a good time for Diaspora students to interact and share experience on their life.
The civic education is locally known as Itorero.
According to Boniface Rucagu, the chairperson of National Itorero Taskforce, an estimated 300 youth studying from regional countries and beyond are expected at the RDF Combat Training Centre in Gabiro for the two-week training.
The Itorero taskforce, in collaboration with different ministries, has been organising the youth camp that promotes civic education among the Rwandan youth for the last seven years.
Students in the country also attend the camp prior to joining university. The activities include participating in voluntarily work.