Burundi: Magufuli seeks to play role in resumption of dialogue

Burundi’s Special envoy and President of the Senate, Reverien Ndikuriyo meeting with President John Magufuli in Dar es Salaam

Burundi’s Special envoy and President of the Senate, Reverien Ndikuriyo meeting with President John Magufuli in Dar es Salaam.

Burundi’s special envoy and President of the Senate, Reverien Ndikuriyo has met Tanzanian president John Magufuli and briefed him on the political crisis that has escalated in the tiny East African country.

The discussion held at the State House in Dares Salaam Tuesday, is a follow-up to last week’s meeting of Presidents Pierre Nkurunzinza and John Magufuli, where the embattled Burundian Head of State accepted resuming talks under Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni’s mediation.

Uganda said on Saturday it would recommence mediating a peace process in Burundi following recent worsening of the violence.

In a press communiqué issued by the directorate of presidential communications quoting Tanzania Foreign Affairs Minister Dr Augustine Mahiga, the talks will open in the Ungandan capital Kampala Monday December 28.

The statement said President Magufuli, the current EAC Chairman urged his Burundian counterpart to open doors for peaceful dialogue in Uganda’s capital Kampala.

Minister Mahiga, however, revealed that during the meeting Burundi’s Special Envoy Ndikuriyo expressed dismay over the decision by the African Union to deploy 5000 peacekeeping troops in his country.

“Burundi has 6,000 peace keepers in Somalia, 1,000 in Central Africa. It’s in their interest to bring peace and will be the last to disturb and bring conflict similar to killings of civilians in Kimbari,” Ndikuriyo reportedly said.

The envoy told Magufuli the situation was not alarming despite concerns from the European Union and United Nations, and the international community that the country is on the brink of a civil war or genocide.

President Magufuli has also tasked Minister Mahiga to go to Burundi and find out why Burundians were freeing their country. He said the tour to Burundi will be helpful in the peaceful dialogue slated for later this month in Uganda.

Magufuli’s predecessor Jakaya Kikwete hosted three East African heads of State summits on the Burundi crisis before he left office. Tanzania like, Rwanda, is home to tens of thousands of Burundian refugees who have fled the violence.