BUJUMBURA August 24th (ABP) – The Independent Center for Research and Initiatives for Dialogue in Burundi (CIRID), organized on Monday August 22, 2022 in Bujumbura a public conference on the theme: “34 years ago, Ntega Marangara or the first regional geopolitical war in Africa of the Great Lakes”. Déo Hakizimana, founder of this organization spoke about the open letter addressed to the president of that time and the impact it had in stopping the massacres that were underway in those two towns in northern Burundi.
In an interview granted to the press at the end of this public conference, Mr. Hakizimana said that the holding of this public conference was born of a magnanimous gesture made to him by a group of his friends who recently praised for the exceptional courage he had in writing an open letter in 1988 during the Ntega-Marangara massacres to demand an end to these massacres and ethnically targeted arrests.
Through that same letter, he added, he was also required to ask the leader of that time, Pierre Buyoya, to use his power to appoint a multi-ethnic commission representative of the Burundian people whose mission would be to study the Hutu, Tutsi question on the basis of which people were killing each other.
According to the founder of CIRID, it is to be noted that currently Burundians are beginning to understand that this open letter represented a historical document of indisputable value which helped to change the situation and which counts a lot in the changes recorded until here. According to him, the Ntega-Marangara crisis was, from his point of view, the first known regional geopolitical war in Africa of the Great Lakes. He specifies that this is proven through his book of a postgraduate dissertation entitled “The Geopolitics of Africa of the Great Lakes: At the time of truth”.