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Celebration of the 32nd anniversary of the National Unity Charter


Feb 7, 2023

GITEGA/NGOZI/CANKUZO/BUBANZA/KAYANZA February 7th (ABP) – Burundi celebrated on Monday, February 6, 2023 the 32nd anniversary of the National Unity Charter in all the provinces where the senior authorities of the country joined the population.

In Gitega province, the political capital (center of the country), celebration ceremonies were honored with the presence of Burundi Head of State Evariste Ndayishimiye. In that province, the ceremonies brought together the senior authorities of the country, including parliamentarians, members of the government, the former Head of State, Sylvestre Ntibantunganya, senior army and police officers, representatives religious denominations, senior executives of the country, representatives of the Diplomatic Corps and numerous people of the urban center of Gitega and its surroundings. They began with the laying of wreaths at the National Unity monument by the President of the Republic, followed by the representative of the diplomatic and consular corps accredited to Burundi. The ceremonies continued at Ingoma Stadium.

Upon the arrival of President Ndayishimiye in that square, an ecumenical prayer was performed respectively by the Archbishop of the Catholic Diocese of Gitega, Mgr. Bonaventure Nahimana, the representative of the United Methodist Free Church in Burundi and the representative of the Islam.

The speech for the occasion was delivered by the Head of State. He said that the charter of national unity recalls the commitment of Burundians to bury the hatchet forever, in order to build a nation whose components live in harmony. For President Ndayishimiye, ordinary citizens are not responsible for the tragic events that tore the unity of Burundians apart. It is the ruling class that has been responsible for this because of unfulfilled selfish interests. To the current leaders who would be led by such behavior, he asked to pull themselves together and instead, to serve the interests of the people loyally.

To the offenders, he indicated that he will spare no effort to dismiss them. To the youth, President Ndayishimiye recommended not to take the paths strewn with pitfalls of those false leaders. As for the leaders of all levels of the country, President Ndayishimiye asked to get actively involved in the promotion of national unity. “You must dissociate yourself from injustice, regionalism, clientelism, ethnicism, etc., he winked at them. “These anti-values” undermine the unity of Burundians and lead undoubtedly to the crumbling of the Burundian nation. Social justice is the guardian of unity, he said. Thus, he asked those responsible for that sector to apply the law, to make the culture of justice their battle horse, so that unity reigns in Burundi forever. To all Burundians, he asked for mutual respect and the patriotic sense which must also be manifested through the healthiness of neighborhoods and villages. The heads of administrative entities responsible for laissez-faire in that sense, will be sidelined, as will anyone who withdraws from carrying out community development work.

Shortly before, the governor of Gitega province, Venant Manirambona, congratulated the Head of State for warming Burundi’s cooperative relations with the international community.

In Cankuzo province, it is the Vice President of the Republic, Mr. Prosper Bazombanza, who joined the people of that province in the celebration of the National Unity Charter, a check on the site by ABP has revealed. Those ceremonies began with the laying of wreaths at the monument of national unity by the Vice President of the Republic and then continued at the Buhumuza stadium.

                      The Vice President of the Republic lays a wreath at the National Unity Monument

In his speech for the occasion, the Vice President recalled that the charter of national unity, in Burundi, was signed after hard times linked to ethnic divisions and killings sown by the colonizers. It was following the assassination of the democratically elected president, Melchior Ndadaye, in 1993, by ill-intentioned people, that this signature followed.

Today, to safeguard this unity, Mr. Bazombanza called on leaders to strengthen good governance so that the fruits of development are beneficial to the entire population.

He called on the population to support that national unity through solidarity and development work, hence, he stressed, we must break with begging and the habit of frequenting places known as ligalas, explaining that is impossible to participate in community development work when hungry.

The governor of that province, Mr. Boniface Banyiyezako, previously indicated that the province lacks modern roads to develop. He also reported that weather variations have damaged crop fields from which the prices of basic necessities have risen in the markets. That is why he asked for assistance in iron sheets for inhabitants whose houses were destroyed and in seeds for those whose crop fields were damaged.

In Ngozi province, the ceremonies marking the 32nd anniversary of the National Unity Charter took place at the monument of unity located near the Muremera stadium, in Ngozi province, where two wreaths were laid successively by the Speaker of the National Assembly, Gélase Ndabirabe and the provincial governor, Emmanuel Ntaconsanze.

                      The Speaker of the National Assembly and his wife lay the wreath at the National Unity Monument

In his welcoming address, Governor Ntaconsanze said that the inhabitants of Ngozi understood that the enemy of unity is none other than poverty. He urged the people of Ngozi to put forward development activities.

In his speech of the day, the Speaker of the National Assembly of Burundi returned to the place of the Almighty in the establishment, management and sustainability of national unity. He said that the unity wanted by Burundians must be unity that manifests itself in love, sincerity, which results in complete actions and not in words. National unity, according to him, is characterized by solidarity, equitable access to public goods, Burundian cultural values. He indicated that the disruption of unity has its roots in the colonial power which inaugurated in Burundi the policy of “divide and rule” in order to plunder the wealth of the country.

He pointed out that the national unity charter concerns all Burundians without exception. Burundians are called upon to make a self-assessment of the past 32 years in order to effectively live unity. Leaders must take the lead because they constitute the base and the shield of national unity. The ceremonies had a strong popular participation unlike previous years.

In Bubanza province, the ceremonies of the celebration of the 32nd anniversary of the adoption of the National Unity Charter, were honored with the presence of the Minister of Communication, Information Technologies and Media, Léocadie Ndacayisaba, a check in Bubanza by ABP has revealed.

                   Minister Ndacayisaba shaking hands with the governor when singing the anthem of national unity

In her speech, Minister Ndacayisaba called on the inhabitants of Bubanza province, especially the various authorities and leaders, to serve as a good reference in the strengthening of Unity which, according to her, remains the major pillar of sustainable development. She asked them to banish all forms of division and to be complementary, each according to their talents, for the fight against poverty and the increase in production. To young people, she invited them to avoid idleness and to team up into self-development cooperatives with the aim of abounding in the direction of the responsible and hardworking State.

As for the governor of Bubanza province, Cléophas Nizigiyimana, he stressed that this anniversary comes at a time when unity is a reality in all sectors and institutions of that province. The Governor of Bubanza called on the local residents to show solidarity and mutual aid, and to strengthen unity even in households. It is worthy to note that only three political parties laid their wreaths at the Unity monument, namely CNDD-FDD, UPRONA and RANAC.

In Kayanza province (north), the celebration ceremonies of the 32nd anniversary of the adoption of the National Unity Charter began with Mass which was celebrated at the Christ-Roi parish located in the headquarters of Kayanza province. The ceremonies continued at the Unity monument where wreaths were laid by the provincial governor, the communal administrator, representatives of the judiciary, the defense and security forces as well as political parties such as CNDD-FDD, UPRONA, FRODEBU, CNL and FNL.

In his speech for the occasion, the governor of Kayanza, Rémy Cishahayo, stressed that development is only possible if the unity of Burundians is consolidated. He thus asked the inhabitants of Kayanza to strengthen unity and social cohesion and to look aback so as not to fall back into the tragedies committed in the past. He was happy that the people of Kayanza got rid of everything that disunited them, which, for him, is remarkable through the fact that the people put forward the development works. Governor Cishahayo took the opportunity to recommend to the communal administration of Kayanza to inventory, since Tuesday, the hotels, bars and restaurants that do not meet the hygiene conditions and to close them immediately. He also asked the communal administration to identify the houses and kiosks belonging to the commune in order to be reassured that the tenants have contracts with the administration and to drive out the commissionaires. He demanded the immediate closure of the bars located at the Gatwaro livestock market. He did not fail to take issue with the resurgence of divorce cases and took the opportunity to ask everyone to do everything possible to stop that phenomenon which does not even spare State officials.