• Fri. Apr 19th, 2024

Communal OPJs are called on not to imprison anyone accused of offenses unless there are no other means to use so that they can appear free


Dec 3, 2022

GITEGA November 28th  (ABP) – The Independent National Commission for Human Rights in Burundi with the support of Swiss cooperation organized for two days in Gitega (center of the country), an awareness workshop for Judicial Police Officers councils (OPJ) of the Center-East region on the fight against illegal detention. That awareness session was animated under the theme: “Together, let’s advance human rights in Burundi”, a check on the site by ABP has revealed.

In his occasional speech, the leader of the promotion sub-commission at the CNIDH, Me. Jacques Nshimirimana, said during regular, notified or unannounced visits to places of detention, the CNIDH noted certain irregularities which border on the violation of human rights of the detained person. Those are, according to him, the non-separation of minors from adults, the poor keeping of the preparatory register, the absence of qualification as an offence, the detention of minor children who have not reached the age of criminal majority, the exceeding the legal period of security detention and police custody.

It also concerns the detention of people with mental disabilities, pregnant women with a pregnancy of six months or more or nursing children under six months without the authorization of the public prosecutor. He further pointed out that to this must be added detention for civil cases, detention for acts which are not criminalized and detention on the orders of administrative or police authorities not having the quality of OPJ.

Mr. Nshimirimana, for that purpose, indicated that the CNIDH is concerned about those challenges and has made it its duty to bring its stone to the building with a view to positive change within the framework of the implementation of triple mission including the protection, promotion and advisory role in the field of human rights.

Speaking, the chief of staff in the governor’s office, Mr. Gérard Nibigira, in his introductory remarks, asked the communal OPJs not to imprison any person accused of offenses except the one who they see that there is no other means to use so that she can appear being free. He also suggested that they always refer to the law before arresting people.

According to Mrs. Janvière Hatungimana of the CNIDH, the independence of a National Human Rights Commission is understood as the power to act, decide and judge in complete impartiality without political or religious constraint and without external pressure or personal interest.

Note that in its operation, the CNIDH is subject only to the law and that no state body can give it injunctions in the accomplishment of its missions. It is also entitled to the state budget as well as donations.