Photo of the week: young people’s lack of enthusiasm for the army

Photo of the week: young people’s lack of enthusiasm for the army

54 officer candidates were enlisted within the regulatory deadlines throughout the country. The army staff was forced to extend the registration period, for lack of sufficient candidates. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

According to military sources, only 54 officer candidates were enlisted throughout the country during the entire period of December 2022.

The general staff of the Burundian army, surprised by this lack of enthusiasm, was forced to extend the enrollment period until January 12 for the categories of non-commissioned officers and officers.

The press release extending the registration deadline for enrollment in the Burundi National Defense Force (FDNB) does not specify reasons behind this lack of attendance of young graduates of humanities in the army.

Contacted officers assure that reasons behind this lack of enthusiasm is said to be linked to the poor salary conditions of the military.

“We are poorly paid despite the efforts made in peacekeeping activities, whether inside the country or abroad”, officers explained.

In addition to the meager salary, the effects of the 2015 crisis triggered by another controversial term of the late President Pierre Nkurunziza are weighing heavily on the morale of young Burundians.

“Officers of the Tutsi ethnic group were discriminated in several positions of responsibility”, said a soldier.

“Several soldiers including ex-Fab officers (Burundian army before the integration of Hutu rebel groups) were killed with the 2015 crisis. Others are missing or imprisoned. A phenomenon that has had a negative effect on young Tutsi image of the army”, said a high-ranking officer.

Young Hutus are more attracted to politics. Some believe that after completing their studies, to have positions of responsibility, it is better to join the CNDD-FDD party than to enlist in the army, analyzes another officer.

Officers claim that senior army officers, especially generals, are no longer interested in military life. Many are more involved in politics and others have become businessmen.

The same military sources claim that military officials enrich themselves at the expense of lower-ranking military personnel.

“Those who are sent to Somalia (in an African Union peacekeeping mission) complain that part of their pay is often embezzled. This limits the devotion of young people to the great mute in Burundi”, conclude our sources within the FDNB.

Recently, President Neva announced that he wanted to “improve the salary of the military and police according to the education level”.

Photo : Burundian soldiers including young officers in a parade on the sidelines of a national celebration in the commercial city Bujumbura

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