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Burundi Defense Minister Worried About Drunkenness Among Soldiers

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Burundian soldiers may lose rights to booze unless they strictly observe discipline and professional ethics.

 Alain Tribert Mutabazi, Burundi Minister of National Defense and Veteran Affairs admitted on Thursday that there is gross indiscipline in the national army that needs to be quickly tamed.

The revelation comes at a time some members of the country’s army have been involved in summary execution of civilians while under the influence of alcohol.

 Mutabazi described these crimes perpetrated in recent days by the military as despicable and barbaric acts. All of these murders have one common denominator: arguing after one too many drinks.

After three premeditated assassinations in less than a month, committed by soldiers including an officer, all under the influence of alcohol, the Burundian Minister of Defense calls on his men in uniform to be more disciplined

“In all these blunders, there is the effect of alcohol and all these guilty soldiers were arrested and judged in accordance with the law by authorized bodies,” Mutabazi said.

Alain Tribert Mutabazi, Burundi Minister of National Defense and Veteran Affairs

On the night of March 31 to April 1 at the Ku Mucamo bar an army officer in Kinanira II who insisted on having a beer, also shot a waiter at point blank range. It was getting late and this bar had already closed.

On the night of April 7, while at a bar located in the capital of the province of Muyinga, a soldier shot dead at close range the bar owner.

After being beaten up, this soldier from the Mukoni camp went to retrieve his weapon from the barracks. But when he returned, his attacker had already left and he lashed out at this authority who had come to inquire about the situation after hearing gunshots.

On April 13 at around 8:30 p.m., in Buringa, in Gihanga commune of Bubanza province, following a dispute over a memory card, a master corporal of the 212th Commando Battalion, with the easy trigger, took out his Kalashnikov and shot and killed an innkeeper.

There was disagreement regarding this mobile phone accessory sold by this soldier who chose the hard way to settle the issue once and for all. He almost got lynched by the mob.

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National

CHOGM 2021 Postponed Due To COVID-19 Pandemic

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Paul Kagame and Commonwealth Secretary-General, Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland QC are expected to officially announce the postponement of CHOGM 2021 as a result of the continuing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.  

President Kagame said in a statement that having reviewed all available evidence and risk assessments, and after close consultation between the Commonwealth Secretariat and Member States, the decision has been made to postpone the CHOGM in Kigali for a second time. 

The decision to postpone CHOGM for a second time has not been taken lightly, the statement said. 

“The health and welfare of all Commonwealth citizens at this critical time must take precedence. We look forward to welcoming the Commonwealth family to Kigali for CHOGM at the appropriate time,” Kagame said.

The Cmmonwealth Secretary-General is queues saying that, “We know that the COVID-19 pandemic is continuing to have a hugely damaging impact on our member countries, many of whom continue to face huge losses to lives and livelihoods. And while it is with deep disappointment and regret that we cannot bring Commonwealth leaders together at this time to discuss many of these critical issues, we must be mindful of the huge risks large meetings pose to all.

“I want to thank the Government and people of Rwanda for their professionalism, support, patience and their impeccable readiness to hold CHOGM. And I want to thank all our member countries and, in particular, the United Kingdom as our Chair-in-Office and India, who have suffered so grievously in these trying times. I look forward warmly to a time when we can be reunited with the Commonwealth family, face-to-face, in Rwanda when the conditions allow for us to do so safely and securely.”

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Boat Donated By Kagame To Nkombo Islanders Not Operational

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Residents of Nkombo Island will have to wait longer to travel on a boat donated to them by President Paul Kagame.

Nkombo island is located on Lake Kivu in Rusizi district. Residents last saw this boat in October last year when it was officially handed to the district.

According to authorities of Rusizi district, the delay to use this boat is because drivers are still undergoing intensive training until they learn to operate the water vessel.

Currently the boat is docked in Karongi district and will only be available when the drivers have fully completed training.

President Paul Kagame has a special attachment to the people living on Nkombo Island. He donated  the second boat to the islanders on June 29, 2015 while addressing opinion leaders in Rusizi district.

“I am giving you an even bigger vessel, please use it to relate, trade and utilize all the opportunities your district has to offer,” advised Kagame.

In 2010, Kagame donated a passenger boat with a capacity to carry 100 passengers and 40 tons of luggage. The island hosts over 180,000 residents.

For the past regimes, this island was extremely neglected and treated as though it was part of Democratic Republic of Congo formerly Zaire. Previous governments ridiculed and despised Nkombo islanders as backward people and attached them to ‘Bashi’, a Congolese tribe.

With this deep neglect sanctioned by previous regimes, Nkombo islanders invented a language known as ‘Amahavu’ a mixture of two dialects; Congo’s Lingala and Kinyarwanda.

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President Tshisekedi Orders Martial Law Rule In Kivu, Ituri

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President Felix Tshisekedi has ordered rule of martial law in DRCs North Kivu and Ituri provinces effective on Thursday, May 6.

The Congolese President called on the people of the two provinces “to cooperate closely with the military authorities deployed by denouncing enemies of the people and complicity at whatever level” with those perpetrating violence.

The shift in management of this part of the country is aimed at stemming the bloodshed and returning order to the region, the president said in an address on national television Monday.

During the period of martial law, Congo’s security forces will have the right to search homes, seize weapons and prohibit travel, Tshisekedi’s spokesman, Kasongo Mwema Yambab Yamba, said in a separate address.

The military and police authorities will also have the right to ban publications and meetings deemed contrary to public order and to prosecute those suspected of violating the peace, he said.

Eastern Congo with population of 20 million people, borders Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi. This region hosts at least 120 armed groups

Violence in eastern Congo includes numerous conflicts over control of land and resources, protection of local communities, and rebellions linked to neighboring countries.

Ituri and North Kivu are rich in metals like gold and coltan and armed groups including alleged criminal networks in the army sometimes profit from their trade.

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