The New Times (Kigali)

28 November 2011

Rwanda: 40,000 Students Begin Ingando

Close to 40,000 secondary school leavers, yesterday, commenced the national solidarity camps (Ingando) at in various sites around the country.

In a phone interview with The New Times, Boniface Rucagu, the chairman taskforce of Itorero ry'Igihugu, said that the camps would take place in 84 schools from all the country's 30 districts.

He said that the three-week camps which began yesterday will end on December 17.

"Solidarity camps are very important because they help the government to have well-brought up children in terms of discipline," Rucagu said.

He said that Ingando also help student understand their role in the development of the country.

Speaking to The New Times, Bishop John Rucyahana, the Chairman of National Unity and Reconciliation Commission (NURC), said that camps are aimed at inculcating the students with the cultural values of the Rwandan people.

"Nobody develops from a vacuum, meaning that as Rwandans, we have to develop from within our values," Rucyahana said.

He added that principally, the purpose of the camps is to restore the Rwandan values and to teach the youth the value of being Rwandan.

"If you don't have values and culture, you cannot know the importance of who you are and cannot achieve sustainable development, so I believe these seminars will be of great importance to these youngsters," Rucyahana said.

Claudine Uwamahoro, a former student at Kicukiro Teacher Training Centre, said that camp would enable them to learn various issues concerning the country's history especially the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsis.

"I am happy that my parents allowed me to attend this camp and I am looking forward to learn different lessons which will enable me become a useful and responsible citizen," Uwamahoro said.

Tony Ngabo, who completed his studies from Groupe Official de Butare said: "I think solidary camps are good because they help us to love for one another and most importantly, love the country," he said.

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