Last Week Rwanda’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has organized a diplomatic tour during which diplomats accredited to Rwanda visited various parts of the country including parts where people were misled through propaganda spread across social media platforms claiming that those parts are in the hands of armed Rebel Group of the Self-Proclaimed General Callixte Sankara.
The Same Week Sankara with the real Name Nsabimana Callixte was paraded in front of the Media in Kigali after weeks transferred to Rwanda from Comoros Islands where he was trying to escape Rwandan Justice.
Nsabimana and colleagues have been using Social Media platforms to create panic among citizens by delivering various sorts of the rumors demonstrating that the rebel is about to capture the whole country while on the other side in the European Countries the same people were doing whatever and still doing to sanitize Rwanda’s image on the International Scene.
Many International reports have ranked Rwanda among the best destinations simply because of its protected ecosystem, the beauty of the Nation, and the best place even for doing business.
From diplomats visit to Rwanda’s National Parks and travelling to border with Neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo send a clear message to the International Community as well as to Rwandans and Neighboring Countries.
To Rwandans, the Message is that they should be aware that Rwanda is secure and peaceful nation which is also the reason why they must change their behavior on how they consume social media information.
This time is a critical moment for Rwandans who are now becoming digitally connected and this is the time spreading rumors also is taking center stage.
Despite Rwanda’s becoming an information Society it is also our duty as citizens to shift from our out-of-date mindset where believing in propagandas and Rumors become important.
Rwanda Security System is not something that you wake up in the morning and proclaim you have destroyed the system to the point you make people believe you are in control of any part on Rwanda’s territory.
Rwanda’s Leaders have always demonstrated to the world and citizens that the country values much its sovereignty and security. That attention has not gone and based on that what citizens should be doing is working hard for their socio-economic transformation than investing time in believing rumors most of them are got from social media like YouTube.
To Media: It is very astonishing that some journalists or YouTubers in Rwanda also show the irresponsibility when they are informing Citizens. With recent cases some local journalists were arrested due to their irresponsibility in sharing content with Rwandans and were immediately taken as invading the country’s security and the well-being of citizens.
Media practitioners are the ones that citizens will act in accordance with the information they deliver to them and that why our Media system should revise their conducts towards their responsible role to the Rwandan Society and use of social media.
To the International Community: The message that should be drawn from the diplomats visit to Rwanda’s regions is that this central African Nation is secure and none should fear to travel and enjoy the beauty of this Nation.
Among those diplomats who visited the Southern, Northern and Western Provinces of Rwanda include diplomats from countries that have warned their citizens about possible insecure area in Rwanda and some of them being Nyungwe Forest where diplomats enjoyed the beauty of the forest, canopy work and fresh air from that Natural Forest.
As conclusion let’s all use our critical thinking in the case we are consuming and digesting information that we get from Social media and again if we are confused much stand up for our rights to information and ask the Government to deliver truthful information on matters that we are unable to understand rather than basically relying upon Social media rumors.
About the Author:
Experienced Communications Associate with a demonstrated history of working in the non-profit organization management industry. Skilled in Photography, Twitter, Microsoft Programs, Sales, and Editing. Strong media and communication professional with a Bachelor’s degree focused in Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs from National University of Rwanda.