The Rwandan Tutsis, Eugenie Mujawiyera, a young
Rwandan Tutsi woman, discusses the story of her ancient
ethnicity, weaving into her narrative the dramatic events
which make up Rwandan history from independence to the
present day. While the Tutsi are again an integral part of
the Rwandan nation - along with the Hutu and Twa— Mrs.
Mujawiyera seeks an answer to a very fundamental question:
Why did an entire ethnicity become the object of attempted
physical extermination at the end of the twentieth century?
The author narrates the role of Germany and Belgium in the
historical development of the Rwandan society, arguing that
the arrival and departure of these colonial powers
contributed significantly in the destruction of
centuries-old traditions of inter-ethnic coexistence in
Rwanda. She also argues that the social development of the
country after independence was based on an artificially
engineered culture of inter-ethnic suspicion and bias, with
the Tutsis officially regarded as feudal hindering to a new
social order. She contends that this bias and the policies
that flow from it sowed the seeds of the 1994 genocide.
With an unmistakable flavour of eyewitness accounts and
thoughtful reflections, the author warns that there is no
guarantee that the 1994 tragedy will not be repeated.
About the author
Eugenie Mujawiyera was born to an exiled Rwandan Tutsi
Presbyterian pastor and a Tutsi mother. She lost her father
- along with virtually every other member of her family - in
the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. Then a second year student in
the Faculty of Social Sciences and Literature at the
National University of Burundi, Ms. Mujawiyera decided to
return to Rwanda after the genocide to help rebuild her
country. While in Rwanda, she continued her studies at the
National University of Rwanda, graduating in 1997. She also
studied Russian at the Moscow Linguistic University and
moved to Canada in 2005 where she currently lives and works.
She maintains close links with her native country.
--by Dr.Claude Shema Rutagengwa
Adonis and abbey