BUJUMBURA March 14th (ABP) – The body of the judiciary organized on Saturday March 11, 2023 at the presidential palace of Kiriri, the ceremonies of presentation of the 2023 wishes to the Head of State at the same time Supreme Magistrate and his family. The ceremonies were attended by the Vice President of the Republic of Burundi, the Prime Minister, Cabinet members, the Chief Justice, the President of the constitutional court, the Executives in the Office of the President, the Governors of the provinces, the commissioners of the CNIDH and the TRC (Truth and Reconciliation Commission)
Chief Justice Emmanuel Gateretse commended the step already taken by the judicial authorities during a period of 6 months after the start of the 2022-2023 judicial year. According to him, several activities have been carried out including the handling of cases. He asked the magistrates to continue to work in accordance with judicial law and the professional ethics of their profession.
The Minister of Justice, Mrs. Domine Banyankimbona, took that opportunity to present the achievements made in the Ministry of Justice for the year 2022.
According to her, during the year 2022, several activities were carried out. She cited the establishment of village notables throughout the country to establish peace and security as the basis of development, campaigns to enforce settled cases to reduce trials in the courts, field trips to listen to the grievances of plaintiffs and others. Minister Banyankimbona did not fail to point out that during the year 2022, 41 magistrates were dismissed from their functions because of corruption.
Speaking of the challenges that haunt this sector, the Minister revealed those related to the lack of sufficient equipment including vehicles and computers to perform their duties properly. Despite the presence of those challenges, the achievements of the Ministry of Justice for the financial year 2022 are satisfactory, she affirmed.
For the year 2023, the Minister of Justice reaffirmed that her ministry will continue to go on the field to listen to the concerns of the people. She also promised to make a great effort to reduce the prison population, explaining that the latter constitutes a heavy burden for the country since inmates consume without producing. The minister also promised to continue the project to digitize the services of that ministry. She ended her remarks by wishing on her behalf and on behalf of the body of the judiciary, the best wishes for the year 2023 to the President of the Republic of Burundi and his family.
In his speech, the Head of State also commended the step already taken by the Burundian justice, explaining that justice is a good pillar of security and sustainable development of a country. He asked the magistrates to value justice in everything and everywhere. For him, the body of the judiciary must be at the service of all Burundians. Judges must avoid influence peddling based on ethnic groups, region, religion, neighborhood and others in their verdicts. Heads of courts and prosecutors were also asked to avoid the imprisonment of people accused of misdemeanors (petty crimes/offenses) and to process criminal cases expeditiously.
The administrative officials, that is to say, the administrators and the governors of the provinces and the other leaders, are called on to be advisers to the magistrates, explaining that certain shortcomings related to the bad collaboration between the magistrates and the administrative officials still appear. It is also with the aim of promoting the justice sector, and especially with a view to reducing the number of trial verdicts in the courts and public prosecutor’s offices.
To the question of insufficient equipment at the Ministry of Justice, the Head of State promised to grant 50 computers and 36 motorcycles to that body of justice. President Ndayishimiye took that opportunity to give 6 cows to 6 employees of that ministry who were exemplary in the performance of their duties. He did not fail to wish best wishes for the year 2023 to the whole body of justice.
The Ministry of Justice also granted the Head of State 2 cows, one called “Yabutungane”, the other called “Yaterambererirama” and a sheep “Nyamweru” as a sign of reproduction and peaceful cohabitation which will characterize those cows.