Friday, April 3, 2009

Rwanda, Early history

Early History :
The earliest inhabitants of the region now known as Rwanda were the Twa, a group of diminutiveforest hunters and gatherers, according to Bethwell Ogot in the UENSCO History of Africa . The Twa were supplanted by the immigrants of the forbearers of the agriculturalist ethnic group , today known as Hutu. The Hutubegan to clear forests for their permanent settlements. The nature of a third major migration , of a predominantly pastoralist people known as Tutsi , is highly contested By the fifteenth century , many of the Bantu Speakers, including both Hutu and Tutsi, had organisedthemselves into small states.
Twa, a pigmy people, now costitute only 1 % of the population. While the Hutu and Tutsi are often cosidered to be two separate ethnic groups, scholars point out that they speak the same language , have a history of inter-marriage, and share many cultural characteristics. Traditionally the differences between the two groups were occupational rather than ethnic. Some say that the more valid description of the Tuti -Hutu divide is by class and not only occupational. The Tutsi are the upper class and the Hutu are the lower class.
The first European to enter Rwanda was a Germanwho visited the court of Rwabugiri, the then king of the area, in 1894. The next year the king died and in a turmoil the Germans occuppied the entire area known as Ruand-Urundi.
During World War I Belgium, in retaliation , invaded the east central Africa occuppied by Germans from the Belgium Congo, now known as DRC, in 1916. After the world War I as per UNITED NATION"S verdict Ruanda-Urundi became became Belgium's colony in 1925.
From 1933 Belgium Government issued individual identity card to each person in Ruanda-Buruni mentioning their ethnic group Hutu or Tuts, definig them as Hutu (85 %) or Tutsi
(14 %) , remaining Twa 1 %.