Burundian anti-3rd term movement celebrates first victory, talks stall

WONT LEAVE THE STREETS: Anti-third term protestors in Bujumbura

WONT LEAVE THE STREETS: Anti-third term protestors in Bujumbura

Organizers of the anti-3rd term protests against President Pierre Nkurunziza consider the postponement of the elections as a major victory in their fight to stop the president from running for the third time.

Reacting to the postponement of the elections that were due today and June 26, Pacifique Nininahazwe, one of the organizers, says this is a blow to President Nkurunziza who has always been adamant the electoral calendar would be observed as planned.

“Even without the recommendations of the summit in Dar es Salaam, legislative and communal elections were technically unsustainable. This is the first great victory of the protest against the third term. We expect soon the greatest victory: no third term,” visibly excited Nininahazwe told this website.

He says President Nkurunziza has always put the interests of Burundians at the backburner and his personal in front

Meanwhile, the decision to postpone the election has not stopped anti-3rd term protests, they still continue in Bujumbura. A university student was shot dead by police and another sustained injuries early Friday morning, when police shot at protestors gathering in Musaga, south Bujumbura.

In the same neighborhood, a civil society woman activist was harassed by angry police, accusing her of instigating and taking part in the protests.

“I was severely harassed and beaten. They accused me of collaborating with protesters and that they wanted to punish me so as we do not come here again in Musaga,” Ange Bukweberi, member of a local association, MUTIMA MWIZA (Good Heart).

Journalists also are still being harassed by security forces accusing them of inciting protesters to demonstrate.

Talks between the government and opposition leaders and civil society aimed at ending the turmoil have stalled yet again. Civil Society and the opposition want UN envoy Saïd Djinit replaced by a “non-partisan” mediator.

In a correspondence, sent to the UN Secretary General, organizers of the protests have accused Saïd Djinit, Ban Ki-Moon ‘s special envoy trying to bring together the two sides, of leaning on the government’s side, hence supporting President Nkurunziza in his third term quest.