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The status of Burundian soldiers and the fair salary policy vis-à-vis special statuses on the agenda of the Cabinet meeting


Aug 23, 2022

BUJUMBURA August 22nd (ABP) – The Cabinet met on Wednesday August 17, 2022, in Gitega (central Burundi), under the chairmanship of Head of State Evariste Ndayishimiye with 8 items on the agenda including the Bills on the status of officers of the National Defense Force of Burundi, that of non-commissioned officers of the National Defense Force of Burundi and that of non-commissioned soldiers of the National Defense Force of Burundi as well as a Note relating the implementation of the fair wage policy vis-à-vis the special statutes according to the press release from the General Secretariat of the State.

Those three projects were presented by the Minister of National Defense and Veterans Affairs. The press release indicates that today, officers, non-commissioned officers and non-commissioned soldiers of the Burundi National Defense Force are governed by Statutes put in place in December 2010. Note that those projects had been analyzed and adopted by the Council of Ministers, but that in the meantime it has been necessary to review the organic law of 2017 governing the National Defense Force of Burundi to adapt it to the Constitution of 2018. These projects come to adapt to the new organic law of 2022 but are largely inspired by those statutes of December 2010, by bringing certain innovations which can allow the officer, the non-commissioned officer and the non-commissioned member to work in a socio-economic and security environment of the moment. Those projects bring innovations, particularly in terms of rights, duties and incompatibilities, advantages linked to working conditions, seniority, support for the family of serving soldiers who die, as well as support for a dignified reintegration into civilian life for those who retire.

New developments have also been made with regard to bonuses, allowances and other social benefits as encouragement and compensation for the constraints and risks of the military profession. Innovations are also observed in terms of career management and the disciplinary system. At the end of the debate, the three projects were all adopted with, among other recommendations, to verify whether the benefits provided are harmonized with those of the Burundi National Police, to reduce the end-of-career allowance to 4 months instead 12 months, to verify whether the old-age pension that the draft provides exists at the level of the National Police and if that is not the case, to delete the provision relating thereto. It is also a question of verifying whether the administrative and pecuniary regularization for the detained and acquitted soldier is provided for at the level of the National Police and if that is not the case, removing the provision relating thereto and specifying that the conditions of training and improvement are determined by a regulatory text.

The Cabinet also analyzed a note on the application of the fair salary policy with regard to special statuses, presented by the Minister of the Public Service, Labor and Employment. The press release indicates that with the salary policy for the Burundian public sector, the components of the remuneration structure consist of an index share which takes into account the qualification at recruitment and seniority, an employment share which takes into account of the job actually occupied according to the classification and the rating of the jobs which took place according to the clearly defined criteria which are, the qualification required (to access such or such other job described in the classification report), the complexity and the technicality related to the job held, the contextual factors (work environment, constraints related to the occupation of a job and others) and the degree of responsibility (ability to adapt, involvement in planning and other ). It is also a part-performance as a one-time supplement to remuneration that takes into account individual or collective merit) and a part linked to the individual situation of a civil servant or public agent (Family allowances). Regarding its implementation, this salary policy will apply to all public sector employees, regardless of their status. After discussion on the Note, the Cabinet reached certain conclusions. That involves, among other things, reformulating the title in such a way as to show that the defense and security forces are not concerned, rewriting the content of the Note in the form of a Prime Minister’s Order, setting up a high-level permanent technical team for a certain period of time which will support the structures concerned in the implementation of that policy, that the ministers in charge of public security and national defense organize moral talks in their respective bodies so that the  police and the military do not make an erroneous interpretation of that policy and that the ministry in charge of the Civil Service with the unions organize a media panel to explain the new salary policy and the salary adjustment so that the civil servants do not continue not to misunderstand it.