Burundi Red Cross: “Uncontrolled urbanization only leads to disaster”

Burundi Red Cross challenges the Burundian public opinion to understand that not all parks are to be built in. “Uncontrolled urbanization only leads to disasters as we see it today in the city of Bujumbura and elsewhere,” said Anselme Katiyunguruza, Executive secretary of Burundi Red Cross at a press conference.

Anselme Katiyunguruza “Enough is enough. People have to build where they are allowed to build”

It was this Wednesday, May 8, a date marking the International Day of the Red Cross and the Red Crescent, the birthday of its founder Henry Dunant. This year’s theme was: “What do you like about the Red Cross?”

Mr. Katiyunguruza explains that every international conference of the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Red Crescent addresses “uncontrolled” urbanization. That, he says, is part of the logic of prevention.

“We are unanimous with the national platform for risk and disaster reduction. Enough is enough. People have to build where they are allowed to build,” he insisted.

He recalls that the city of Bujumbura is “very threatened” if no urgent actions are taken. “There is a team of Burundi Red Cross who are working on the contingency plans in the three communes of Bujumbura city. We will talk about it in due course. We are convinced that there are works which necessarily come back to the public power.”

In his statement, Pamphile Kantabaze, President of Burundi Red Cross, has said “access to people in need of assistance remains the cornerstone of our daily activities”. Nevertheless, he does not deliver figures of vulnerable people to be assisted.

“We do not have the numbers of the vulnerable people yet. The question of data control remains a challenge for all of us; the humanitarian community and the development partners.”

Translated into English by Pierre Emmanuel Ngendakumana