GITEGA June 21st (ABP) – The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Development Cooperation, Ambassador Albert Shingiro was, on Tuesday June 20, 2023, the guest in the Upper House of Parliament in Gitega (Center of the country), to respond to questions from senators. That session was led by the President of the Senate, Mr. Emmanuel Sinzohagera, a check on the site by ABP has revealed.
The questions asked by most senators related to the migration of Burundians to foreign countries, among others, Arab countries in search for employment, taking into account that recently, Burundi has approved recruitment agencies to facilitate that movement. The senators wanted to know if those who will be sent by those agencies will be protected or not and if the country will not lose the workforce.
Minister Shingiro reassured the senators that those employees will be spared the problems that others have encountered in the past, taking into account the agreements that Burundi has signed with countries in need of employees and companies responsible for hosting them. He further explained that there has been the establishment of a joint commission to closely monitor their treatment in those countries, which, according to him, guarantees them the protection of their right as humans.
He, to that end, specified that so far, 24 worker recruitment agencies have been approved in accordance with the law. Still according to Minister Shingiro, 17 agencies have already started working and 500 employees have already been deployed.
The senators wanted to know, among other things, the positive impact of that migration on the country. As a response, the minister in charge of foreign affairs and development cooperation indicated that the country will benefit from so many things such as currencies, the reduction in the unemployment rate among young people and reassured that there will be no lack of workers taking into account the rate of young graduates seeking employment.
The Minister also pointed out to the senators that before their departure, those employees receive training on various topics including entrepreneurship, so that upon their return, they can carry out projects from the capital drawn in those countries, for their self-development.
Another positive impact of this migration is that those agencies pay taxes. Burundi has already received an amount of 3.5 billion Burundian francs from those agencies, he revealed.
The Speaker of the Upper House of Parliament, Mr. Emmanuel Sinzohagera, said that labor is also a product to be exported to benefit from foreign currency, in addition to coffee and tea. He asked that there be in each embassy of the countries that host those workers, a diplomat who takes care of those workers on a daily basis.
Apart from that, the President of the Senate asked the ministry in charge of development cooperation to sign agreements with neighboring countries, such as the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania and Uganda, to have arable land, to improve food production in Burundi.