Two teachers’ unions appreciate CNIDH intervention over their concerns

On behalf of two teachers’ union namely the General Union of Teaching Staff in Burundi -SEPEDUC and the Union of Professional Teachers in Burundi-SYGEPEBU, Egide Nkeshimana, and Deputy Chairman of SEPEDUC says their unions appreciate the step achieved by the National Independent for Human Rights- CNIDH. “The Commission has set up a dialogue session and listened to both parties and we expect that tangible solutions will result from these consultations,” he says.

Egide Nkeshimana: “It would be better if the amount imposed by COSSESONA were no longer deducted from their salaries without their consent”

On 10 January, CNIDH has set up a commission of five people to investigate the complaints raised by some teachers. The team will provide a report within seven days.

Mr. Nkeshimana also exhorts the rights commission to intervene as three leaders of those unions were arrested. Antoine Manuma, SYGEPEBU Chairman and Gérard Niyongabo, SEPEDUC Chairman were arrested by the National Intelligence Services in Rutana province respectively on 7 and 9 January. Cyriaque Manirakiza, another leader of SEPEDUC union was also arrested in Muramvya province on 13 January.

Egide Nkeshimana pleads for the release of their colleagues. “They should continue to shed light on their accusations after being released”, he says adding that other teachers fear that they can be arrested at any moment. “It would be better if the amount imposed by COSSESSONA were no longer deducted from their salaries without their consent”, he says.

Those two teachers’ unions are opposing the forced deduction of BIF 500 from the teachers’ salaries imposed by COSSESONA since 2017. “We ignored the process but we finally discovered that the deduction is imposed by COSSESSONA”, he concluded.