Muyinga: residents give their contributions in the week of the war veterans, the collections end up in the individuals’ pocket

Muyinga: residents give their contributions in the week of the war veterans, the collections end up in the individuals’ pocket

In the province of Muyinga (North-Eastern Burundi), residents say they are suffering following the presidential party’s members forcing them to give contribution in kind or in money. The funds are being collected as the CNDD-FDD (former Hutu rebel movement) has dedicated this week to the celebration of the war veterans. But the money ended up in the pockets of the leaders of the presidential party in the province. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

Activists of the CNDD-FDD party, especially its youth collected forced contributions of either foodstuffs (such as beans, rice, corn, cassava flour, etc.) or money .

“We were forced to give either rice or cassava flour that we eat every day,” said a fourty-year old person living in the Swahili district of the provincial capital.

“Others prefer to be given money. No receipts, showing that such and such has contributed, is given,” said one resident.

Other sources indicate that in rural areas the contribution was also forced.

“The contribution or collection of food is given door to door. The majority offer between 2 to 5 kg of either beans or rice or even sorghum grains. If we prefer to give money, we pay “a sum ranging from 2,000 to 5,000 Burundian francs per household. Traders give more than that”, residents say.

A certain Shabani, representative of the CNDD-FDD party’s youth league in the province demanded daily reports to know who did not respond to this call, reported a sympathizer of the ruling party in the Cumba zone in commune of Muyinga where the provincial leader of the Imbonerakure lives.

As for civil servants who have been appointed by ministerial decree or ordinance, the contributions vary according to the post held.

Some contributed millions of Burundian francs, others hundreds of thousands, according to witnesses.

Some CNDD-FDD opponents and activists say that this event is one of the most giant through which the presidential party “ransom the population”.

The week dedicated to the veterans ended on November 19th, this year. The ceremony took place in the commune and province of Ruyigi (east). This week, an event decried by former combatants from various Hutu rebel groups who fought the then Tutsi-dominated Burundian army for more than a decade after the assassination of Melchior Ndadaye, the first democratically elected Hutu president in 1993 begins each year on November 16. This date, the CNDD-FDD signed a ceasefire with the government of the time. It was in 2003.
The other non-CNDD-FDD veterans speak of “an event that excludes us”. They believe that the ceremony should be organized by the ministry in charge of veterans to “take on an inclusive character”.

In several provinces, residents denounced forced contributions on the sidelines this week, which provincial representatives of the ruling party denied.

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