Burundi’s ruling party wins election, opposition rejects Museveni

Poll results

Poll results

The ruling party in Burundi has overwhelmingly won the June 29 parliamentary elections, according to the results announced Tuesday by the country’s electoral body (CENI).

According to the National Independent Electoral Commission (CENI). the National Council for Defense of Democracy-Forces for Defense of Democracy (CNDD-FDD), won 60.28% of the vote, obtaining 77 seats in the Lower Chamber of Parliament, out of the total 100.

AMIZERO Y’ABARUNDI (Hope for Burundians), an opposition coalition led by Agathon Rwasa came in a distant second with a paltry 11.6 %, equivalent to 21 seats in the Chamber of deputies. This alliance pulled out of the communal and legislative polls in protest two days to election day.

CNDD-FDD ally UPRONA won just 2.49% (2 seats).

Twelve parties and two coalitions of independent candidates vied for seats in the Lower Chamber of deputies, but only three managed to get results.

For the opposition that did not participate in the polls, the Chairman of CENI Pierre-Claver Ndayicariye says what would have been their seats will be distributed to those parties that remained in the electoral race.

This comes as a contradiction to what he had said a day before the June 29 polls, that the votes would become nullified.

While the constitution offers 30 per cent of seats to women in the National Assembly, the results show that they got only 25 seats out of a hundred.

The current constitution, a product of the 2000 Arusha Peace and Reconciliation Agreement, provides that Parliament must observe a strict women and ethnic representation at 60 % Hutu, 40% Tutsi, and 3% for the coopted Twa.

This gender and ethnic representation is not reflected in the results but CENI says the government will make appointments to that effect.

Communal election results will be announced at provincial electoral branches, according to CENI.

Mr. Ndayicariye said the June 29 polling turnout amounted to 74.32 per cent.

As the ruling party appreciates the outcomes, opposition still rejects the results and demands cancellation so as to prepare a free and fair electoral process.

“The electoral process did not constitute a consensus as recommended by the international community and this is one of the reasons that pushed us to pull out. So the results of the June 29 polls should be put aside in order to organize and hold all elections on the same date as presidential,” Agathon Rwasa, the leader of Hope for Burundians told this website.

The opposition has also rejected Monday’s EAC heads of state summit recomedation that the forthcoming presidential election be postponed until July 30.

Rwasa said the summit was missed some critical issues in the conflict in Burundi namely, third term and elections postponement until peace returns to the country.

He argues the heads of state should have rejected the just concluded controversial polls, and they should have called for a longer postponement of the presidential election slated for July 15.

The Burundian opposition has also wasted no time in snubbing Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni as new mediator in the stalled talks to end the crisis.

The recent EAC heads of state summit appointed Mr. Museveni to facilitate talks between the government and the ruling party on one side, and the opposition and civil society on the other but unlike the government side that welcomed Museveni’s appointment, opposition argues he is not the right choice given he has been in power for nearly 30 years.

Frederic Bamvuginyumvira, the Vice-president of FRODEBU, an opposition party says he not optimistic Museveni will make headway in the talks.

“The core cause of the current crisis in Burundi is about the third

term bid of President Pierre Nkurunziza. Museveni has been ruling

Uganda for 29 years now. How can he advise him to withdraw his bid?,” Bamvuginyuma told Afrika Reporter.

He further said the EAC leaders inadvertently endorsed the third term of president Nkurunziza as they didn’t discuss the issue.