EAC integration

Five Burundi MPs decide to boycott 5th EALA session in Kigali

Five out of seven Burundian MPs of the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA]) announced that they will not participate in the EALA fifth session to be held in Kigali from 5 to 17 March. They say they fear for their safety.

EALA Burundian MPs during a press conference in Bujumbura

EALA Burundian MPs during a press conference in Bujumbura

“Emérence Bucumi, Léonce Ndarubagiye, Jean Mari Muhirwa, Isabelle Nahayo and Emmanuel Nengo, Burundian EALA MPs, sent a letter to the Speaker of the Assembly Daniel F. Kidega informing him that they will not attend the session in Kigali, next week”, says Bobi Odiko, EALA Senior Public Relations Officer.

He says other four Burundian parliamentarians have already confirmed their participation. He also says he has been surprised to hear that those MPS fear for their safety while Rwanda has reassured that participants’ security will be ensured.

The Fifth Meeting of the Fifth Session of the Third Assembly takes place from Monday, March 6th, 2017 to Thursday, March 16th, 2017.

The three key bills on the agenda are the EAC Gender Equality and Development Bill, 2016, the EAC Polythene Materials Control Bill, 2016 and the EAC Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights Bill, 2016.

Relations between Burundi and Rwanda have deteriorated since the current crisis in Burundi, which lasts nearly two years, erupted in April 2015. Burundi accuses Rwanda of harboring rebels and coup plotters. Rwanda is currently housing more than 80,000 Burundian refugees, according to the UNHCR report.

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