Well, it is not strange that the Inter-Burundian Dialogue done with help of Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and with former Tanzanian President Benjamin William Mpaka. These two did it under the East African Community (EAC) umbrella and with support of the African Union (AU). The continued oppression of opposition to the President Pierre Nkurunziza and his ruling party CNDD-FDD, who changed the constitution and also allowed the President to start his third term in 2015.
Therefore, the Inter-Burundian Dialogue that has gone since the crisis and crackdown on opposition occurred. Haven’t created peace, neither dialogue that has made any sense. That is why the recent reports of even Mpaka being ‘disappointed’ with the results. Nkuruniziza and CNDD-FDD had no interests in changing their paradigm. As they have the Courts, Parliament and Society in general. In Burundi, Nkurunziza is the law and it will be bent to his needs.
That is why this is the recent result from the last meetings, which has lasted and where the venue and the people showing up has been decided by the President and his men. Therefore, many vital opposition groups not been involved, neither has bigger civil society, therefore just by that sense the whole negotiations and sessions. They have not delivered anything substantial. Just like Nkurunziza would prefer.
“In his speech before all the participants in the inter-Burundian dialogue in Arusha, Facilitator Benjamin William Mkapa, has announced “there will be no agreement, declaration or binding document” after the two-week session expected to end this 8 December. In the 7 December plenary session that lasted thirty minutes, some points of convergence that could a form an agreement as well as points of divergence that could be the subject of dialogue and negotiation in the future have been identified” (…) “Benjamin Mkapa says the points of divergence require more consultation among the stakeholders so that there should be a way out of the political impasse that Burundi has been through since 2014 as soon as possible” (Uwimana, 2017).
While that was happening, another plenary sessions in the Inter-Burundian Dialogue that has steadily happen since 2015. With nothing to show for, in the midst of it, there been more arrests, assassinations and exile for leadership in the opposition. The CNDD-FDD Youth League, the militant and violent arm of the government, the Imbonerakure who has also taken part in killings and kidnapping individuals who is opposing the regime.
As that is still happening, there been workings on new changes to the Constitution to give the President, yet more time in power. His plan is to not leave and stay for life. He does it with all means to oppress and control all parts of society. Therefore, they are holding a ceremony on the 12th December 2017 at Commune Bugenda in the Province of Githara. Where they are planning a referendum to fix it ready for the President. This will be celebration to secure the future legally for Nkurunziza.
So with that initial change, the Arusha Accord of 2000 is officially buried somewhere inside Burundi. It is totally dead and has no return while Nkurunziza and CNDD-FDD are ruling. They just used the EAC and the mediation to stall for time. They just used the Inclusive Inter-Burundian Dialogue, to use time to consolidate more power and make sure they knew of all their enemies. That is why there are less of them, if there are people who stand against them. They will crush them. Just like when one of the Opposition Parties got a new leader, his Hotel was destroyed the day after. That wasn’t a coincidence. That is the CNDD-FDD leadership in action.
Pierre Nkurunziza has no plan of leaving and he uses all tools to stay there. No stone left unturned. The EAC Dialogue and Sessions was wasting time, but giving him time to change the constitution. Through a Referendum. So that he can elect himself again in 2020. This with a lavish ceremony on the 12th December, the next steps for his re-election and his possible fourth term. With all the bloodshed and the destruction of the opposition. Even in the refugee camps inside Tanzania has certain leaders of the opposition been arrested and detained in Burundi. Also people have disappeared and vanish from the surface of the earth.
The Inter-Burundian Dialogue was built on wrong direction, as Museveni as peacemaker has a stake in the young leader in Burundi. He wants loyal friends in the presidency around him. At one point in 2015, when the crisis was at its worst and the uprising was starting. There was reports of Ugandan Army and helicopters flying to secure his movement. Therefore, he had a useful measure and provider to secure Nkurunziza legitimacy. As well, as the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission provided the technical aspects of the election. This was to show that the International Community, foreign forces had their stakes in the process. Still, it was more for show, than for what charade that was going on.
If all the violence and deaths, all the refugees and people in exile is showing. Is that Nkurunziza are controlling and taking advantage of his position. The use of Mpaka and EAC is also really a proof of Museveni, to not take alone ownership. But using the EAC as a mediator, but him giving way. Mpaka has been told who to invite and minutes to discuss. Therefore, the control from the government has ruled out any results or changes that would question the third term and also the rule of Nkurunziza.
This was bound to fail, because it was made to do so. Nkurunziza and Museveni, haven’t had any interests in other results or making accords in accordance with Arusha Agreement of 2000. They just wanted to secure the CNDD-FDD and Nkurunziza. To say something else, is just to lie or make a alternative story. With all the time passed and all the reports coming. There haven’t been any concessions or any significant proof of will, to divert or even discuss anything that would question the breaches of a third term and now a possible fourth. Peace.
Uwimana, Diane – ‘Arusha: “There will be no agreement, declaration or binding document”, says Facilitator’ (07.12.2017) link: http://www.iwacu-burundi.org/englishnews/arusha-there-will-be-no-agreement-declaration-or-binding-document-says-facilitator/