Burundi - Elections

23 May 2013

Burundi - Elections

Consensus and impartial code of conduct to favor preparation of 2015 elections in peaceful climate and trust, SRSG says

23 May 2013 – Consensus between all political parties and actors over legal (normative) and administrative electoral related issues as well as an impartial electoral code will favor the preparations of 2015 elections in a peaceful climate and trust, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Office in Burundi (BNUB) Parfait Onanga-Anyanga stressed.

"More than anywhere else, it is essential here to prepare the elections within a peaceful climate. More than anywhere else it is crucial to reach the largest consensus possible over legal, administrative and logistic issues", Onanga-Anyanga said on Wednesday at the workshop on the revision of the electoral code held in Kayanza (north of Burundi), from 22 to 24 May.

The workshop is organized by the Government of Burundi and brings together the country political parties and actors. The initiative is part of a road map adopted at a workshop organized by the United Nations Office in Burundi (BNUB) in March 11-13, 2013, which entailed 42 recommendations, including inclusive dialogue between all political stakeholders in view of the preparations of 2015 elections.
In his statement, the Special Representative highlighted the need for an electoral code that "provides all guarantees of impartiality in order to build trust over the electoral process" and recalled that resolution of electoral disputes should be addressed by national competent organs.
SRSG Onanga-Anyanga also called on all Burundian political actors to reject violence he reminded last weeks' incidents which tarnished the national political space. "I invite all political leaders to avoid, in their statements or acts, any attitude that could exacerbate tensions and violence. I also encourage them to sensitize their militants, particularly the youth, for more responsibilities and respect for others difference and freedom."
Finally, the Special Representative reiterated the United Nations and international community will to support Burundi during and after the electoral process.
The opening ceremony of Kayanza's workshop was chaired by Burundi first Vice-president Thérence Sinunguruza who stated that the meeting was the response of the Government regarding the implementation of the road map.
While stressing the need to revise the electoral code in view of peaceful, transparent and consensual elections in 2015, the first Vice-president suggested some points that could be part of a future code of conduct for political parties and their supporters during the electoral process.
"Political parties and actors should support the holding of democratic, free, open and transparent elections; respect the results of the polls; utilize judiciary institutions to address any contest related to the results; reject the use of violence; and dialogue between them and participate in the discussions related to the elections organization by the National Electoral Independent Commission (CENI)", he told.
The first Vice-president finally informed that the Government remains opened to any proposals related to the elections legal and institutional framework and the establishment of a national environment conducive to peaceful, free, transparent and democratic elections.
Representatives of Burundian institutions, members of civil society organizations and diplomats attended the opening ceremony of Kayanza's workshop.