BUJUMBURA February 28th (ABP) – Burundi was able to win six major projects out of a total of seventeen prioritized at the East African Community (EAC) Summit of Heads of State held in Uganda last week, said the First Deputy President of the Republic, Mr. Gaston Sindimwo, during a press briefing he held on Tuesday February 27, 2018.
Mr Sindimwo said that the summit, which had a dual mission – namely, the retreat and the actual holding of the 19th EAC Heads of State Summit – was very beneficial for Burundi which, out of the seventeen projects that have been prioritized by the community and that will require an amount of 78 billion US dollars, was able to win six major projects.
The latter are the construction of the railway linking Uvinza (Tanzania) and Musongati, the construction of the Rumonge-Bujumbura road, the rehabilitation of the Bujumbura International Airport and the construction of another one in the countryside, the construction of the railway from Rwanda joining Isaka and Musongati through Keza and Gitega, the Lake Tanganyika exploitation project to promote commercial activities on the lake as well as the construction of a nutritional center.
Mr Sindimwo said that during the summit, the questions relating to the functioning of that institution, the one related to the inter-Burundian dialogue and the constitutional referendum process as well as the economic partnership between the EAC and the European Union, have been treated.
From the last issue analyzed, Mr. Sindimwo declared that Burundi will in no way engage in partnership negotiations with the European Union (EU) as long as it has not lifted the sanctions against Burundi, clarifying that Burundi masters its security situation. He took the opportunity to deny the statement by the UN official by the name of Zed, who is still producing unjust reports on Burundi. He said that since 2012, the official has been chanting of probable genocide in Burundi but which has never happened.
As a result, Mr. Sindimwo recalled that the statements describing Burundi, Syria and the Democratic Republic of Congo as slaughterhouses, have no credibility and only aim at dividing Burundians as they did over the years, adding that it is a strategy to stir up hatred and create panic between Burundians.
The 1st Deputy President of the Republic reported on the efforts already made by the government, especially the establishment of the National Inter-Burundian Dialogue Commission (CNDI), which helped in the collection of ideas to be included in the new constitutional text, thus reassuring that even the ideas from the politicians were taken into account. He also insisted that no foreigner will be able to love Burundi any more than the Burundians themselves.
Regarding the resumption of the inter-Burundian dialogues as the constitutional referendum process is nearing its end, Mr. Sindimwo pointed out that the question of amending the constitution has been reserved for the Burundians in general but not for political parties.
He explained that it is for that reason that the Heads of State, after having understood the clarifications given by the Burundian delegation, they were convinced and understood the need to continue the dialogue even after the referendum; hence they imposed President Mukapa’s extension of the term as the facilitator.
As for the repatriation of those dialogues, Mr. Sindimwo said that the decision is in the hands of facilitation but that the preference of the Burundian government is that they take place this time at home to minimize the expenses. .
Mr. Sindimwo made a strong appeal to all Burundians to participate massively in that election and vote according to their wishes because, he said, the absence of those who do not want the amendment will never prevent the government to continue.