Makamba: relocation of the Imbonerakure out of the high school of excellence of Makamba

Makamba: relocation of the Imbonerakure out of the high school of excellence of Makamba

A sigh of relief is pushed by parents and students of the high school of excellence of Makamba in the capital of the same province (Southern Burundi). This, after the relocation of the Imbonerakure (members of the youth league of the CNDD-FDD party) out of high school. They had just spent more than five months there, undergoing paramilitary training. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

Imbonerakure had been following military training since last April. They were removed a week ago to premises at the “Nkurunziza Peace Park Complex Stadium”.

Parents worried about the progress of their children’s education. Students were fed up with the military exercises of the Imbonerakure which were done day and night.

“These Imbonerakure were doing military gymnastics, armed with rifle-like gear night and day. We could not rest or study peacefully since they were in high school,” explain learners.

They add that these Imbonerakure made night rounds around the perimeter of the school fence. This frightened the students who no longer dared to leave the dormitories at the night for a short call.

Some people say that “we were concerned”. They were afraid to bring the issue of safety and discipline of their children to the general assemblies while the high school principal André Nininahazwe was an influential member of the presidential party.

They regret that these trainings were organized in premises where there are young adolescent girls. Parents were afraid that their daughters would be abused.

They ask the Head of State to prohibit political activities in schools as outlined in the school regulations.

Hundreds of Imbonerakure in paramilitary training had been staying at the Makamba High School of Excellence since the beginning of April. The former deputy and rebel Jean Baptiste Nzigamasabo nicknamed Gihahe, originally from Kirundo province (northern Burundi) had been dispatched by the CNDD-FDD to supervise these activities since the beginning of these trainings.

On August 27, the CNDD-FDD secretary general announced that the presidential party wants to train 25,000 Imbonerakure at the military parade by next year. It was on the sidelines of the day dedicated to the Imbonerakure, celebrated in the political capital Gitega.

Cited in several abuses against opponents and accused of replacing the police, the army and the justice system in several parts of the country, the Imbonerakure are still considered by the UN as a “militia”.

And since December 2021, these members of the CNDD-FDD youth league have been accompanying the Burundian army in South Kivu (eastern DRC) to track down Burundian armed groups including the Red Tabara considered by the Burundian authorities as a movement of terrorists according to our sources and several reports from independent organizations.

For a few months, their paramilitary training has no longer been hidden, organized in the name of “civic education”.

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