NUR students condemn the system which was put into place before 1994. This was during the public lecture of the Governor of the Southern Province on â€śCultural Values as the Key to Building the Nationâ€ť. Promoting students was based on ethnicity where the Tutsi were discriminated based on their ethnic group and regions where they came from rather than performance.
It was established that prior to 1994, students were being promoted according to their ethnic groups and the region of origin. The Governor made the remarks on 11th April, 2012 at the National University of Rwanda (NUR). He noted that during that time, cultural values were no longer respected in schools. â€śOur cultural values suppose equity and justiceâ€ť, said the Governor. He went on to say that before 1994, â€śa Tutsi student who scored 70% could retake that class while a Hutu student who scored 40% was promoted. Despite ethnic discrimination, this system also favored more mainly Hutu students who came from the northern part of Rwanda than others who came from elsewhere in the country.â€ť
NUR students reacting to the former education system responded with annoyance. They judged it as being unfair and shameful to those promoting it at the time. Noella Uwimana a student in 3rd year Economics speaking with disappointment declared that system as being drastically wrong. â€śI think there was no education because a student has to be promoted according to performance and merit not to ethnicity or region of origin, itâ€™s a shame to promote students according to which ethnic group or region they belong toâ€ť, said Noella.
Cleophas Nshimiyimana a 2nd year student offering geography reckons that the former education system contributed to the countryâ€™s poverty. â€śThis system which favored one part of Rwandans led the country to poverty because there were people who were denied the chance of studyingâ€ť, said Cleophas. He went on to say that, these people could have contributed to the development of our country as medical doctors, lecturers, engineers, ministers, to mention but a few.
Currently in Rwanda students are promoted according to their intellectual performance. It is geared towards promoting equity and education quality. This has led to producing quality graduates.
Filed by: Jean Baptiste Micomyiza