Country FilesEast & HornCountry Profile 2014: BURUNDI

Thu,26Apr2018

Posted on Thursday, 06 February 2014 10:47

Country Profile 2014: BURUNDI

Nkurunziza wants another chance

All of Burundi’s political actors are looking ahead to national elections in 2015. Talks organised by the United Nations in March 2013 brought together the ruling Conseil National Pour la Défense de la Démocratie-Forces de Défense de la Démocratie (CNDD-FDD) and the opposition, and led to the creation of a roadmap for credible elections. More meetings will follow to set the timetable and decide which bodies will be authorised to handle election disputes. The opposition with drew from the 2010 polls citing mismanagement.

 

 TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Top Burundian Companies

Top Burundian Banks

theafricareport-burundi-72dpiNkurunziza wants another chance

All major political actors have agreed on a roadmap for elections in 2015

Agricultural production lacks investment, particularly the crucial coffee sector

All of Burundi’s political actors are looking ahead to national elections in 2015. Talks organised by the United Nations in March 2013 brought together the ruling Conseil National Pour la Défense de la Démocratie-Forces de Défense de la Démocratie (CNDD-FDD) and the opposition, and led to the creation of a roadmap for credible elections. More meetings will follow to set the timetable and decide which bodies will be authorised to handle election disputes. The opposition with drew from the 2010 polls citing mismanagement.

In the run-upto the elections, political leaders will struggle to constrain their young members, who have threatened to face each other in the streets. The opposition umbrella group Alliance des Démocrates pour le Changement complains that the government opposes or disrupts its meetings.

Agathon Rwasa, a fervent regime opponent who claims to lead the Forces Nationales de Libération (FNL), is unlikely to be able to run for the presidency in 2015. The new draft electoral code requires all candidates to possess at least a bachelor’s degree, something that he does not have.

MODERATE SHIFT

Rwasa also faces opposition from within the FNL. The party elected Jacques Bigirimana as its president at its congress in October 2013. While Rwasa had often threatened to return to the bush where his rebellion began, Bigirimana says that the FNL will be a responsible political party with moderate views.The government also opened an investigation into the 2004 Gatumba massacre, which appears to target Rwasa.The government plans to complete reforms of the constitution and electoral code in 2014. President Pierre Nkurunziza also promised on 26 August 2013 that the government would set up the Commission Vérité et Réconciliation to address the impact of the country’s civil war and political instability.

Nkurunziza faces opposition to another run for the presidency in 2015. The constitution limits a president to two terms based on universal direct suffrage. The CNDD-FDD leadership insists that he can run again because he was elected by parliament in 2005, but the opposition and civil society groups argue that Nkurunziza is ineligible. The 2000 Arusha Accords that brought the civil war to an end also say that the president can only be elected twice.

The government worries about the risk of a terrorist attack because of Burundi’s participation in the African Union mission in Somalia. Other troop-contributing countries have been targets, including Uganda in 2010 and Kenya in 2013. The government is also sending troops to the Central African Republic and Mali.

DONORS IMPOSE CONDITIONS

The government’s plans for economic growth are in part based on promises of development aid made at the October 2012 meeting on the Cadre Stratégique de Croissance et de Lutte Contre la Pauvreté II. Donor countries promised $2.6bn over the 2013-2016 period but in July 2013 said the disbursements would be dependent on political liberty, good governance and the management of the 2015 elections. Civil society groups maintained their protests about the rising cost of living in 2013, as the parliament approved a revised austerity budget with higher and new taxes. The government again raised the price of petrol in September.

A lack of regular investment keeps production erratic in the coffee sector. The country produced 24,000tn in 2012- 2013 but was set to harvest just 9,000- 10,000tn in 2013-2014. Nearly half of the population depends on the coffee and tea sectors, which account for about 60% of the country’s exports.

The government created the Commission Nationale des Terres et Autres Biens to address questions about lands taken from their rightful owners. So far it has not recorded any grand successes and has instead been contributing to enflaming tensions between ethnic groups. In terms of infrastructure, the construction of the national fibre optic network should be completed in 2014. The World Bank and African Development Bank are helping to finance the Rusumo dam in Rwanda and transmission infrastructure to link it to Burundi, which has one of the lowest electricity provision levels in sub-Saharan Africa.

 

 Top Burundian Companies

 

No companies from Burundi featured in The Africa's Report's Top 500 Companies in Africa 2013.

 

 Top Burundian Banks

 

No banks from Burundi featured in The Africa's Report's Top 200 Banks in Africa 2012.

 



Subscriptions Digital EditionSubscriptions PrintEdition

FRONTLINE

NEWS

POLITICS

HEALTH

SPORTS

BUSINESS

SOCIETY

TECHNOLOGY

COLUMNISTS

Music & Film

SOAPBOX

Newsletters

Keep up to date with the latest from our network :

subscribe2

Connect with us