8 July 2015

Burundi: Regional Leaders for Burundi Post-Election Union Government

East African Community (EAC) leaders have once more shown their concern for the return to peace, stability and progress in Burundi judging from the recommendations they made during the third summit on Burundi in the Tanzanian commercial capital, Dar es Salaam on July 6, 2015. They have called on the Burundian authorities and political stakeholders to postpone the presidential election from July 15, 2015 to July 30, 2015 in order to give a chance to political dialogue.

They would want the government that will be formed after the election to be that of national union comprising of both political parties that will participate in the poll and those that will not, RFI reported. They would also want the new government to adhere to the Arusha agreement that set the foundation for the country after genocide of the 1990s and urged that the constitution should not be modified.

To ensure the effective implementation of their recommendations, the leaders designated Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni as their mediator in inter-Burundi political dialogue. The leaders equally called for disarmament of militia to be supervised by African Union military observers and the deployment of a mission of the countries of the Great Lakes Region to verify allegations of the presence of FDLR rebels in Burundi.

Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza whose decision to stand for re-election for a third is the bone of contention in country's current crisis did not attend the summit. It was summoned by the President of Tanzania Jakaya Kikwete who is the current chairperson of the East African Community. The Burundian authorities were represented by Foreign Affairs Minister, Alain Aime-Nyamitwe, Daily Nation reported citing President Nkurunziza's spokesman, Gervais Abahiro.

Pierre Nkurunziza reportedly spent Monday, July 6, 2015 campaigning for his re-election in Burundi's central Mwaro and Gitega regions ahead of the presidential election on July 15, 2015. The Burundian opposition leaders reportedly heavily attended the summit. Justifying the holding of the third summit on Burundi, President Jakaya Kikwete's spokesman, Assah Mwambene said, "The situation getting worse in Burundi actually calls for more meetings than boycotting meetings of this nature," Daily Nation quoted.

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