At a press conference held on August 16th, the Burundian Minister of Education has said the results of the national test 2019 edition are generally bad.
“Only 14% of candidates who took the national test have got at least 50%, i.e. 100 out of 200,” says Janvière Ndirahisha, Burundian Minister of Education, Technical and Vocational Training.
In general, the results of the national test are bad, she adds.
Mrs. Ndirahisha says there are many reasons behind the poor performance on the national test 2019 edition.
“Some people say the government does not provide enough teaching materials to schools,” she says.
For her, the main problem is the high number of students in schools. “Some teachers no longer perform well. Some teach without having prepared lessons,” she also says.
The Minister of Education says the success rate keeps decreasing. The staff in charge of national education will identify the root causes so as to come up with effective solutions, she adds.
Mrs. Ndirahisha says the minimal mark to pass from basic to post basic school is 70 out of 200. The minimal mark is 100 out of 200 for students who will attend boarding school, she adds.
The Minister of Education says 92,406 candidates sat for the 2019 national test whereas the expected number was 92,683.
Seven provinces chosen for project on catastrophe prevention
At a press briefing held on August 21st, the national platform for risk prevention and catastrophe management has said seven provinces will be prioritized in the project to reduce natural catastrophes and promote community resilience.
Anicet Nibaruta, Executive Secretary of the platform says the project will be implemented in Muyinga, Bujumbura, Rumonge, Bubanza, Cibitoke, Kirundo provinces and Bujumbura city.
He says those provinces were chosen because they are mostly threatened by natural catastrophes.
He gives the example of Kirundo province which is often affected by drought. Other examples are Cibitoke and Rumonge provinces where cholera usually occurs at the beginning of the rainy season and Bujumbura province where landslides are often reported, he adds.
“We plan to buy fire trucks which will help to put out fire which often destroys forests in Burundi,” he adds.
Mr. Nibaruta says the platform plans to visit those provinces and will collaborate with the local administration to promote community resilience.
He calls on the population to protect the environment.
“We are determined to support the government of Burundi in the improvement of the population’s living conditions,” says Binta Sanneh, Deputy Country Director of UNDP in Burundi.
She says the project will enhance national capacities for catastrophe management and prevention. It should equip the country with resilience and adaptation to climate change, she adds.
“UNDP will also support the government in the development of community resilience, reduction of natural catastrophes and human life protection,” says Mrs. Sanneh.
Jean Marie Sabushimike, member of the national platform and expert in catastrophe management, says the problems posed by climate change and natural catastrophes are still serious.
He says Bujumbura city is still vulnerable to natural catastrophes. “There is still a lot to do to increase community resilience,” he adds.
The press briefing was held on the occasion of the launch of the project “Support for disaster risk reduction and community resilience in Burundi” initiated by the Ministry of Public Security and Catastrophe Management in collaboration with UNDP.
Over $13 million will be spent for the project which will be carried out from 2019 to 2023.
CNL party denounces acts of political intolerance towards its members
The National Congress for Freedom (CNL), an opposition party says to be worried about increasing political intolerance towards its members. It accuses members of the ruling CNDD-FDD youth wing, administrative and security authorities of persecuting them.
“CNL party meets with resistance from some administrative and security authorities with a political intolerance spirit displayed by their acts of disrupting CNL political activities,” Térence Manirambona, CNL spokesman told journalist. It was at a press conference held this August 21st.
He accuses members of the ruling CNDD-FDD youth wing and their representatives, administrative and security authorities of committing abuses against members of CNL party.
Mr Manirambona is concerned that acts of political intolerance are increasing in this pre-election period. He cites namely the suspension of CNL’s political activities for no valid reason, categorical refusal to open CNL offices especially in Rumonge, Bujumbura, Bujumbura City, Cibitoke, Ngozi, Rutana and Muyinga provinces.
He also denounces cases of burning and demolition of CNL party offices.
“Over 20 CNL offices have so far been vandalized,” he says.
CNL Executive secretary also talks about targeted intimidation and attacks against CNL members. He refers to the attack perpetrated against members of CNL party on their way back home from ceremonies of opening a provincial office in Muyinga province in the night of August 18. This attack caused one death and eight wounded.
“We deplore this unprecedented situation since our members had asked that the administrative and security authorities ensure their security in vain,” says Manirambona.
He condemns the spokesman for the Ministry of Public Security for protecting and encouraging the perpetrators of the abuses committed against CNL members.
At a press conference held on 20 August, Pierre Nkurikiye, spokesman for the Ministry of Public Security said that police investigations revealed that cases of political intolerance reported in the country are provoked by CNL members.
CENI recommends neutrality for members of provincial and communal commissions
In a meeting with governors and leaders of political parties held on August 20th, The National Independent Electoral Commission-CENI has said people who will be members of provincial and communal electoral commissions should not work on behalf of their political parties.
Pierre Claver Kazihise, Chairman of the National Independent Electoral Commission-CENI says people who will be part of the provincial independent electoral commission (CEPI) and the communal independent electoral commission (CECI) will come from political parties, religious denominations, civil society organizations and the administration.
“They must organize neutral, credible and transparent elections,” he says adding that they will no longer undertake activities in their political parties.
CENI will dismiss whoever may continue to conduct political activities after their appointment to work for CEPI or CECI, he adds.
He asks political parties to give names of people who are competent and determined to work for the country.
“Each political party will give a list of 3 names with different genders and ethnic groups in each province,” says Mr. Kazihise.
However, people should know that working for CEPI or CECI is not a job but a service for the country, says another member of CENI.
Abel Gashatsi, Chairman of UPRONA party says a large number of people who will be in provincial and communal electoral commissions should come from political parties.
For him, some political parties may create civil society organizations so they will have many members in the two commissions.
He asks CENI to be careful so that no political party should have more than one member in the electoral commissions.
Mr. Gashatsi says the national electoral commission should collaborate with the administration to know political parties which are present in the province or commune.
“Political parties which are present in the province or commune should be part of CEPI and CECI,” he adds.
As for Noé Mbonigaba, MP and member of the National Congress for Freedom-CNL, the experience should not be part of the criteria to select CEPI and CECI members as there are some new political parties which might not have taken part in the past elections.
Some participants have asked CENI to consider the results of the previous elections to know which political parties are more influential than others, a proposition that Mbonigaba has opposed.
“The previous elections should not be a criterion since not all political parties participated in them,” he says.
CENI has organized the meeting with the provincial governors and political parties to discuss the establishment of the two electoral commissions in the country.
On June 28th, CENI presented the calendar for the 2020 elections according to which three polls are expected to be held on May 20, 2020, i.e. the presidential, parliamentary and communal council elections.
CNL party member killed and four wounded in Muyinga, Police say
At least one member of the National Congress for Freedom (CNL) was killed and eight others wounded in an ambush staged by armed people. The incident took place in the night of 18 August in Rugari area in Muyinga commune of Muyinga province in northeastern Burundi. CNL party officials accuse youths of the ruling party CNDD-FDD of committing that crime.
Sources on the spot say that members of CNL party were ambushed by people armed with knives, machetes and cudgels on their return from Muyinga province chief town.
They had attended ceremonies of opening the party’s provincial office.
A CNL member who was part of an attacked group accuses the Imbonerakure, the youth of the ruling CNDD-FDD, of setting up this ambush.
“They were hidden in the bush. They surprised us when we were going home from political ceremonies held in Muyinga province to open the party’s office. The fighting subsequently began. One CNL member died on the spot and eight others were injured, “he says.
Frédéric Ntahondereye, the provincial secretary of CNL party says the crime was committed by the Imbonerakure. “Three arrested suspects have confessed that they are affiliated to the ruling party,” says Ntahondereye.
He deplores that CNL members are subjected to political persecution. “They should allow CNL party to conduct its political activities freely since it is officially approved,” he says adding that the party’s office that was just opened was vandalized in the same night. “Political intolerance should stop,” Mr Ntahondereye says.
Pierre Nkurikiye, Spokesman for the Ministry of Public Security, says a CNL member was killed and four others wounded in clashes between the CNL members and unidentified armed people on 18 August.
According to Nkurikiye, four apprehended suspects explain that they defended themselves when they got attacked by CNL members who were returning home late at night from Muyinga province. “The investigation is underway to establish the truth about the incident,” says the spokesman for the Ministry of Public Security.
Kenya/Burundi: Kenya, Burundi Draw in Cecafa U15
Nairobi — The Kenya football Under-15 team settled for a 1-1 draw against Burundi in their third Group A match in the ongoing CECAFA Under-15 Championships in Asmara, Eritrea.
Gil Harel had given the Junior Stars a 1-0 advantage in the first half but a second-half strike by Florien Inyeyiteka ensured both sides had a share of the spoils.
Kenya had earlier on mastered two wins against Somalia (3-1 on Friday last week) and Sudan (4-0 on Sunday).
The draw consequently sees Burundi level on points with Kenya, having also won their two opening matches of the championships, albeit with an inferior goal difference.
Up next for the FKF Center of excellence is their final Group A match against hosts Eritrea on Thursday.
The top two teams from each of the two groups will automatically qualify to the semis, set to be played on August 28, while the final has been scheduled for August 30, 2019, in Asmara.