Human Right

Child Rights Watchdog deplores increasing ill-treatment of school girls in Burundi

Ferdinand Simbaruhije, Secretary General of the national federation of associations advocating children’s rights in Burundi-FENADEB says the ill-treatment of young school girls is increasing day by day in the country.

Ferdinand Simbaruhije: “It is a kind of sexual corruption observed in different schools”

Ferdinand Simbaruhije: “It is a kind of sexual corruption observed in different schools”

He refers to the recent case of a school girl who was seriously wounded with a machete on Nyamiyaga hill, in Butaganzwa Commune of Ruyigi Province. Beoline, 20, had responded to the call of Apollinaire Niyorugira, a teacher at Musenga fundamental school, to join him in a banana plantation, around 8:00 p.m., on June 20. Suddenly, Niyorugira stabbed her on the head, neck and arms.

The victim is now receiving treatment at hospital. According to local sources, the young lady was pregnant and would wish to denounce how the teacher abused her. The local prosecution in Ruyigi arrested the alleged offender on June 20.

Simbaruhije says similar cases are reported in different schools. “Not only teachers abuse their students but also their supervisors,” he says adding that the same case happened in Gitega Province when a teacher failed to kill his student after getting her pregnant. In Bisoro Commune of Mwaro province, he says, four young girls were dismissed from school because they were pregnant. “It is a kind of sexual corruption observed in different schools”, he says.

FENADEB Secretary General says such cases of abuse are due to the loss of cultural identity. “Teachers and students don’t respect each other,” he says.

He urges the ministry of Education to conduct a survey in schools to be aware of the current situation as to the mistreatment observed. “Figures would help different organizations set up mechanisms to prevent this bad behavior”, he says.

Contacted, Edouard Juma, Spokesman for the Ministry of Education says such cases are a matter of the Ministries of Public Security and Justice.