BUJUMBURA April 30th (ABP) – The National Observatory for the Prevention and Eradication of Genocide, War Crimes and other Crimes against Humanity (ONPGH) organized on Friday April 27, 2018 at its headquarters in Bujumbura, a press conference to make public its recommendations to political parties and independents who will participate in the referendum of May 17, 2018.

In his statement, ONPGH chairman Jean de Dieu Mutabazi recalled that democracy is a universal value that needs to be constantly consolidated, and that the ONPGH is determined to make every effort to ensure that respect for human rights is maintained at a satisfactory level.

He further stated that the ONPGH noted that the draft amendment of the current Constitution followed a legal and participatory procedure, and that it is a legitimate step and national sovereignty. To this end, he expressed his satisfaction with the 26 independent and political parties registered with the National Independent Electoral Commission to participate in the referendum campaign that reflects the entire political class, in this case the ruling party and the opposition in all its diversity.

Mr. Mutabazi took the opportunity to appeal to all political parties and independents to scrupulously respect the spirit and the letter of Decree number 100/039 of April 23, 2018 opening the electoral campaign for the referendum of 2018. He reminded all political leaders and opinion leaders that “nothing can justify the use of violence, either to maintain power or to conquer power. The only legal and legitimate way of access to power is at the elections, “he added. The chairman of the ONPGH warned some politicians domiciled in some countries of the subregion and in the West, who incite the Burundian citizens to the use of violence and revolt. He encouraged the return movement of refugees and informs them, and particularly opinion leaders who wish to repatriate, that this national observatory is committed to assisting them in the framework of its missions.

The chairman of the Observatory ended his remarks by once more calling political parties and independents and the Burundians of voting age, to conduct their campaign peacefully and serenely, and to bow to the verdict of the polls in case of the victory of “yes” or “no”.

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