• Wed. May 29th, 2024

Team Europe is committed to remaining a reliable partner for the long term in the health and energy sectors


Jun 3, 2023

BUJUMBURA June 3rd (ABP) – The team Europe is committed to remaining a reliable, sure and transparent partner, for the long term, in the health and energy sectors, both in infrastructure and technologies, reforms and governance. This was disclosed on Wednesday, May 31, 2023, in Bujumbura, during the presentations marking the Immersion Day in the initiatives of the Europe team in Burundi.

The team Europe initiatives are implemented in close collaboration with partner countries while taking into account their priorities and capacities, in order to ensure sustainable results that benefit local communities, the Head of Cooperation of the European Union (EU) to Burundi, Antonio Capone underlined. He specified that the initiatives of the team Europe bring together the best possible combination of tools, methods, financing and partners, to produce visible and lasting effects on the ground.

In Burundi, he continued to say, the initiatives of the team Europe are anchored in the National Development Plan (PND 2018-2027) and in the recent vision to make Burundi an emerging country in 2040 and a developed country in 2060.

For his part, the Deputy Head of Cooperation at the Embassy of Belgium to Burundi, Sanne De Mayer, pointed out that Belgium contributes effectively in the implementation of the project on biodiversity through the “Dukingire ibidukikije” program, which aims to protect and preserve the environment, to conserve and enhance natural ecosystems and their biodiversity.

She specified that this program is implemented under three components, namely the preservation of protected areas such as the Kibira and Rusizi national parks, the restoration and protection of land and water resources, as well as the drinking water supply.

“Only 11% of the population have access to electricity and 95% of the population use biomass for their energy needs,” as deplored by the head of the rural development, environment, energy and economy section at the EU to Burundi, Mr. Arnold Jacques De Dixmude.

Mr. Arnold pointed out that the team Europe-Energy allows joint and strengthened coordination to contribute effectively to the achievement of the Government of Burundi’s goal of universal access to electricity by 2030.

In his presentation, the Dutch Ambassador to Burundi, Jeron Steeghs, pointed out that the EU-funded justice sector support program is an integral part of the team Europe. That program is implemented by the Dutch Embassy through Cordaid, Enabel and the NGO Bibliothèques sans frontières, in collaboration with the Ministry of Justice and other partners of civil society, he specified.

All the presentations that were made, especially those related to health and energy, were accompanied by related questions that were answered by those concerned. Asked about the difference between the EU and Team Europe, Mr. Antonio clarified that Team Europe brings together the EU, Germany, Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Italy as well as Switzerland and Norway which are not members of the EU.

The team Europe was delighted with the active participation of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Hydraulics, Energy and Mines, Selemani Khamisi and that of the Ministry responsible for Health, Olivier Nijimbere, in the activities of Immersion Day in the initiatives of the team Europe, an eloquent sign that testifies to the importance that the government of Burundi attaches to the health and energy sectors.

On the sidelines of those activities, a visit led by the head of EU cooperation in Burundi, Antonio Capone, was made to Rwibaga hospital, in Mugongo-Manga commune of Bujumbura province. That hospital was in the past threatened by erosion and was always in quarrels with the surrounding population, following the rainwater, coming from its premises, which threatened the crop fields and the houses, according to the medical director of that hospital, Gratien Makebuko.

                                                                      View of the participants at the Rwibaga hospital

He pointed out that the erosion problem has been solved thanks to the synergy of actions of the team Europe which, in addition to the rehabilitation and extension of the premises of the Rwibaga hospital, has equipped and digitized almost all its services, including the operating room and the maternity ward, by providing laptops and desktop computers. Medical staff have also been trained, he added.

Nevertheless, Dr. Makebuko deplored that the hospital lacks medical staff, high-speed connection for the proper functioning of digital equipment, and a vehicle for transporting drugs.

He has, to that end, asked for everyone’s involvement to remedy the situation for the good functioning of that hospital which, according to him, receives a good number of patients, including those who come from Mwaro province.