Rwanda as a country that was hit by the most inconceivable pogroms of the 20th Century needs a number of steps and measures to effectively heal from the wounds of the genocide perpetrated against the Tutsi in 1994. Of course, Rwanda set a vision to fast-track its socio-economic development and as studies reveal, the progress so far made is promising. One of the measures put in place to heal faster and keep chasing the development goals is telling the truth about the genocide, the history as it really happened. It is in this framework that on 20th June 2019 the National Commission for the Fight against Genocide (CNLG) organized a lecture on Rwanda’s history, specifically the genocide perpetrated against the Tutsi. The lecture was hosted by Kigali Independent University ULK/ Kigali Campus and it was delivered by Archbishop Jean NDORIMANA.
Upon the arrival of the speaker with the team he was heading, Dr. BINENWA Jean Bosco, Lecturer at Kigali Independent University ULK, welcomed them and introduced them to the participants who had thronged the conference room to its capacity.
Shortly after the welcome note, NDORIMANA grabbed the microphone to deliver his message. As he said, the lecture was in line with the annual program organized by CNLG to brief members of the human family on genocide. As he said, the program is commonly known as “Café littéraire”. It is a program whereby a number of books are presented to an audience with one of them being the subject of discussion.
“We’ve come here on behalf of the National Commission for the Fight against genocide to brief you on genocide, its effects, and its prevention. This is in line with the annual CNLG program known as Café Littéraire and we will be able to discuss one of the books here”, he told the predominantly youthful audience.
The book that was selected is trilingual and it is entitled “The Genocide against the Tutsi compared to the Genocide of the Jews and the Armenians.” This is a book that discusses the comparison between the three genocides as mentioned in the title of the book. As the speaker and author said, genocides have similarities. For example, the period before the execution of the genocide against the Jews was marked with hate speeches whereby Hitler, the leading architect of this genocide, said in his book, ‘Mein Kampf’ that Jews were behind the humiliation Germany suffered in the World War I., Of course, these were false and groundless allegations. He also said that Jews were a bad human race that did not deserve to live. On the other hand, he praised Germans that they were superior to any other race. The same happened in Rwanda where people like Hassan NGEZE and GITERA disseminated Ten Commandments of the Hutus. The commandments described Hutus as good while Tutsis were enemies and bad.
The speaker gave many other similarities between the three genocides and his talk was highly appreciated as when he opened the floor for questions, a stream of attendees lined up for questions.
In his conclusion, Archbishop Jean NDORIMANA called upon the participants especially the youth to stand shoulder to shoulder with the government and fight the genocide ideology wherever it might be because it is this ideology that simmers hatred, divisionism and other heinous acts which lead to genocide. He also said that with efforts being made, there is hope that the future of Rwanda is promising and no genocide will happen again.