I begin this dialogue on this premise: Colonization under-developed Africa. It did us more harm than good, and left us decades- long animosities that have become the curse of the Continent.
Many will argue that colonialism begot us Christianity. Like we were not believers, and as though had we not been colonized an entire race of people would have gone to hell. Such impudence.
The Missionaries came, a Bible in one hand and a gun in the other. They told us to close our eyes and say the Lord’s prayer. And when we opened our eyes, our land was gone.
The colonialists created differences among us where there were none. But we continue to blindly believe in that same comic tragic legacy. As a result we have fought each other over who has a narrower nose and who is shorter. President Nyerere sarcastically put it this way, ” at the end of the day, what does it matter who produces more mucus.”
We have every right to be proud of who we are, never mind that we unleashed the greatest loss of lives in this Century. In the end, we will be judged on our performance. Our future surely depends on how we mend our fences, forgiving each other and realizing how we got to where we got so miserably in the first place. We must forgive, but never forget, lest we repeat our errors.
The Rwandan Diaspora, as never before is talented and empowered. Nobody is denied returning home as was the case from 1959 to 1994. Those in self-imposed exile, busy drumming messages of hate and divisionism, negating our genocide, ought to look within themselves and be the judge of their own shortcomings. They will surely drown in the rivers of their venomous hatred.
The debate cannot be conducted in Paris, London or New York. Kigali is the stage. So, the Gang of Four, if you stand on a hill in the wilderness, shouting as loud as you can, nobody hears you ! You can run but you can’t hide.
The Rwandan Diaspora carries the responsibility and moral obligation to contribute to Rwanda’s development. We cannot merely criticize. We are one of the four pillars that hold the Nation up. This is a responsibility we ought to carry with pride. And with this fiduciary duty comes the solemn oath never to betray the Land of A Thousand Hills.