• Mon. Apr 15th, 2024

The “Batwa” community is called on to join cooperatives, in order to avoid poverty


Jan 24, 2024

BUJUMBURA January 22nd (ABP) – The permanent secretary at the Ministry of National Education and Scientific Research, Mr. Frédéric Bangirinama, opened a workshop on Friday, January 19, 2024, to present the results of two projects, namely the project on the schooling of Batwa children and the inventory of entrepreneurial activities of the people of the Twa ethnic group, noted the ABP on site.

That workshop was organized with the aim of raising awareness among Batwa Communities, with a view to eliminating psychological barriers to school attendance and knowing the state of play, challenges and avenues for promoting entrepreneurship among the Batwa of Burundi.

According to Mr. Bangirinama, the Batwa community is one of the social components of Burundian society which is very poorly represented in most public and even religious structures and institutions, emphasizing that the reasons for that situation are multiple. Some are intrinsic to that same community while others relate to other social communities.

To that end, he pointed out that they organized that workshop with a view to learning about the reasons why Batwa compatriots are today socially and culturally behind other components of Burundian society. That has direct and indirect effects on the development of the country, he added.

According to him, it is difficult for Burundi to aspire to its emergence and development, while there is a part of its population which does not study properly, explaining that the root cause of the non-schooling of Batwa children is the lack raising awareness among parents about the importance of school. Those parents must be made aware so that every Batwa child goes to school like the others, especially Batwa girls.

On that occasion, he specified that the ministry will spare no effort to support the Batwa community, stressing that the ministry is committed each year to providing school materials to Batwa children. He has; moreover, the ministry removed the barriers to Batwa children who pass the 9th year competitive exam so that they can be sent to boarding schools with free school fees.

Mr. Bangirinama noted that the results of the study carried out by UNESCO show that Batwa children are attending school, but that there are still challenges facing that community. Those include lack of financial means, lack of awareness about income-generating activities, poverty, and discrimination.

To address those challenges, he invited stakeholders to support the Batwa community so that they are considered like others in the community and at work.

Regarding income-generating activities, the permanent secretary stressed that that Batwa community only focuses on pottery activity, while there are other activities such as trade, agriculture and livestock that they are capable of achieving.

He took that opportunity to call on the Batwa population to join cooperatives, especially young people, in order to avoid poverty and support the development of the country.