GITEGA May 20th (ABP) – The Minister of Interior, Community Development and Public Security, Mr. Gervais Ndirakobuca in collaboration with the Resident Representative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Mr. Richmond Tiemoko proceeded in Gitega, Wednesday, May 19, 2022, to the opening of the activities of the regional consultation workshops for grassroots stakeholders to contribute to the development of the national population policy for the provinces of Gitega, Cankuzo, Ruyigi, Karusi and Mwaro.
In his speech for the occasion, Minister Ndirakobuca specified that the Government of Burundi recognizes that population issues are a key factor in the economic and social development of the country and directs all development efforts towards improving the living conditions of population. That is how the government of Burundi set up a multi-sectoral technical team to lay the foundations of a society determined to take its population problems into its own hands in order to ensure the well-being of generations.
Based on the examples of the various general people and housing censuses organized respectively in 1979, 1990 and 2008, Mr. Ndirakobuca said that over the area of 27,834 km², the Burundian population increased from 4.028 million in 1979 to 5.293 million in 1990 and 8.054 million in 2008. He further reported that the population of Burundi is currently estimated at over 12.828 million and could reach 14.9 million in 2030 according to ISTEEBU population projections. 35% of this population are young people aged between 15 and 35, he added.
Minister Ndirakobuca pointed out that the time has therefore come for consultations with stakeholders in order to enrich the content of the future “National Population Policy” and to take ownership of it because its success, according to him, will depend on the involvement of all sectors and actors of national life.
In order to find a solution to this situation, the Minister of the Interior explained that efforts must be made particularly to reduce fertility, morbidity as well as maternal, infant and child mortality; ensuring quality education so as to develop adequate human resources; encourage sound management of the environment. Integrate the population variable into the planning process at all levels, develop a society that is both informed and aware of the challenges posed by rapid population growth and its implications for national development in order to better play its role in improving everyone’s life.
As for the resident representative of UNFPA Mr. Richmond Tiemoko, the government of Burundi is in the process of organizing social mobilization strategies to benefit from the demographic dividend. According to him, these strategies are among others the sensitization of political-administrative leaders and opinion leaders to promote family planning, new cultural norms in terms of reproduction and informed free choice of modern methods of family planning.
Note that UNFPA is committed to continuing its financial support so that this policy is implemented in order to improve the living conditions of the population in general, women, young people and girls in particular.