BUJUMBURA January 10th (ABP) – Burundian Ombudsman Edouard Nduwimana held at the headquarters of his institution on Wednesday, January 9, 2018, a press briefing in the presence of those who represented the second vice-presidency; the Ministry of Environment, Agriculture and Livestock; the Ministry of Finance, Budget and Economic Development Cooperation and representatives of the fruit plant suppliers of private associations to analyze together the progress of the “2011 fruit plant supply”.
Ombudsman Nduwimana first recalled that his institution has seized the case since 2013 when the suppliers asked the State a sum of 5 061 807 900 BIF and that thanks to the institution of the ombudsman, an amount of 793 178,700 BIF had been paid to some suppliers, some in full, others partially.
After various meetings, mediation sessions and ombudsman’s interviews with stakeholders including the Second vice Presidency, the Ministry of Environment, Agriculture and Livestock, the Ministry of Finance, Budget and Economic Development Cooperation and supplier representatives were organized. The report noted a certain responsibility of State officials in the award of that market supply of fruit trees and also some suppliers who provided fruit trees in the absence of purchase orders. For that reason, the ombudsman pointed out that it was considered appropriate that the responsibility should be shared between the State and those tree suppliers. Thus the mediation proposed to divide the total amount by two and to deduct the amount already paid (793 178 700 BIF) by the State to the suppliers to remain only with 1 737 730 250 BIF which will be paid by the State and shared among the suppliers who have not yet received more than half of their due.
Mr. Nduwimana took the opportunity to thank the suppliers who agreed to waive part of their amount and the State that agreed to support the mediation by agreeing to pay half of that amount to the suppliers. He further added that the case is no longer in the hands of the ombudsman, but rather that it has been sent to the Minister in charge of Environment, Agriculture and Livestock who is the master of the work, and who in turn will ask the Finance Minister to release the amount remaining for the case to be finally closed.
The ombudsman ended his remarks by promising the suppliers that his institution will continue to support them until the closure of the case, in the interest of the State and the citizens who provided those fruit trees. The suppliers’ representatives in turn pleaded for a quick release, no later than March, arguing that there are beneficiaries who have been imprisoned as a result of that case. They also asked that the outstanding amount not be taxed, if not, suppliers would record a loss.