• Wed. Jun 19th, 2024

Capacity building for members of the Sustainable Solutions Working Group


Jun 11, 2024

BUJUMBURA, June 11th (ABP) – The Ministry of National Solidarity, Social Affairs, Human Rights and Gender, together with the Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat : ReDSS), under funding from the European Union, organized on Thursday June 6, 2024, a capacity-building technical training workshop for members of the Working Group on Durable Solutions (GTSD), as part of the search for durable solutions for displaced people and their host communities in Burundi and to support the coordination of actors in the Burundi context, a check on the site by ABP has disclosed.

In her opening remarks, the Minister in charge of Solidarity, Mrs. Imelde Sabushimike, indicated that the aim of the workshop was to build the capacity of GTSD focal points at national level, so that they would have the same understanding of the context of sustainable solutions and be able to respond effectively to its implementation in Burundi.

That activity was also organized as part of the implementation of the project “Promoting comprehensive durable solutions for refugees in the Great Lakes region through increased dialogue and learning exchanges”.

In addition, she pointed out, the workshop also aims to inform stakeholders in the implementation of the national strategy for the sustainable socio-economic reintegration of disaster victims and the inclusion of the Batwa in Burundi, as well as the development of a joint action plan for the socio-economic reintegration of disaster victims in Burundi.

Mrs. Sabushimike recalled that in recent years, Burundi has had to cope with natural disasters linked to climate change and phenomena with harmful effects on the environment. In particular, the rising waters of Lake Tanganyika and the overflowing of the Rusizi River have caused flooding, resulting in the displacement of people, mainly those living along the shores of Lake Tanganyika and in the Gatumba zone, as well as the landslide on Gabaniro village in the Muhuta commune, which led to the mass displacement of the local people.

She went on to explain that the unfortunate consequences of those unfolding disasters are reflected in the deterioration of living conditions, prolonged displacement of populations and their low capacity for adaptation and resilience in a context of poverty. Burundians repatriated from countries in the sub-region, notably Tanzania, DRC and Rwanda, are also returning.

Minister Sabushimike pointed out that there are many victims in Burundi seeking durable solutions. In this regard, she stated that the Government of Burundi, through its development partners, must fulfill its responsibilities and make efforts in the search for durable, effective and context-appropriate solutions for displaced persons, returnees, persons with specific needs and their host communities in Burundi, in order to win the bet and achieve the objectives of the vision of an emerging country in 2040 and a developed country in 2060.

According to her, the Sustainable Solutions Working Group’s mission is to promote the integration of sustainable solutions into humanitarian responses in order to enable a rapid exit from the crisis situation and the strengthening of community resilience. With a view to reinforcing operationality in the field, Sustainable Solutions Working Groups (SSWGs) have been set up in the provinces, with the aim of raising awareness and advocating the inclusion of the sustainable solutions approach in humanitarian and early recovery responses at the level of the various stakeholders in the province.

For her part, the Regional Manager of the Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS), Mrs. Elysia Buchanan, returned to the principles governing the search for and identification of sustainable solutions, including the strengthening of government capacity to fulfill its obligations in terms of leadership or coordination capacity and public funding capacity, and inclusion in political plans and strategies.

Location focus, concentration on absorptive capacity and sustainability are also the principles of research and identification of sustainable solutions in zonal approaches, she announced.

According to Mrs. Buchanan, durable solutions are about access to rights and services without discrimination related to displacement, and can be achieved through voluntary return, local integration or resettlement, respecting the safeguards and principles that govern durable solution processes.

Mrs. Buchanan also recalled that durable solutions for refugees include voluntary repatriation to the country of origin in safety and dignity, resettlement in a third country and local integration. Physical, material and legal security are also criteria for durable solutions, she explained.

The ReDSS regional manager went on to say that the search for sustainable solutions should be seen as a progressive path with multiple, non-linear dimensions, including physical, social and legal indicators.

Note that the members of the Sustainable Solutions Working Group are drawn from the various sectoral ministries involved in its missions, agencies of the United Nations system, bilateral and multilateral partners and international NGOs.