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Burundi Intervention

ACCORD started working in Burundi in 1995, and opened its first in-country office in Bujumbura in 2003. In 2004 ACCORD opened two additional offices in the towns of Ruyigi and Rumonge, followed by the opening of a fourth office in the town of Rutana in beginning 2008. Since 1995, ACCORD’s work in the country focuses on facilitating interactions among key stakeholders in Burundi and between relevant stakeholders and their counterparts in Africa. This included second track assistance during the Arusha negotiations. In addition, activities in Burundi concentrate on skills development to build the capacity of community leaders, civil society, political actors and other relevant roleplayers in conflict prevention, management and transformation. Lastly, ACCORD contributes to ensuring that the ongoing process of the repatriation and reintegration of Burundian refugees takes place in a smooth and conflict-free manner by providing legal assistance and mediation services to both returning refugees as well as welcoming communities (Please see the chronology of ACCORD’s activities in Burundi).

Burundi is a small, landlocked country in Central Africa (27 830 km2), with approximately 7 million inhabitants. The country gained independence in 1962, where after it experienced on-and-off, latent and manifest conflict. More than half a million people died following the crises of 1965, 1972, 1988, 1991 and 1993. The Arusha Peace and Reconciliation Agreement for Burundi which was signed in 2000 as well as the subsequent cease-fire agreements with various rebel movements that did not participate in the Arusha peace talks paved the way for the holding of democratic elections in 2005. This marked the beginning of the country’s post-conflict reconstruction phase which focuses on consolidating the relative peace that the country is currently experiencing by continuing with efforts towards a peace agreement with the one remaining rebel movement, Forces Nationales de la Libération (FNL) and initiating processes to allow the country to come to terms with its past. Naturally, rebuilding the Burundi’s economy after years of conflict is paramount to the success of peacebuilding efforts in the country.

Throughout its involvement in Burundi, ACCORD has been working closely with locally-based Burundian structures, both at a governmental and non-governmental level. The idea of working with local structures ensures that the process of contributing to peace in Burundi becomes a joint initiative between ACCORD and local organisations in the country which ensures sustainability of efforts. ACCORD is an impartial conflict management organisation that thrives on a principle of not taking sides in any conflict situation but rather seeks to assist the parties reach a settlement on their own terms. Indeed it is this philosophy that has earned ACCORD respect in a number of countries where it has worked and continues to work, including Burundi.

The overall goal of the ACCORD Burundi Intervention is to contribute to post-conflict peacebuilding through the promotion of peace, reconciliation and effective governance in Burundi. The Intervention aims to achieve this goal through doing the following:

  • strengthening the capacity of civil society and other stakeholders to respond to conflict through conducting capacity building workshops in conflict management;
  • promoting dialogue towards peace and reconciliation through dialogue sessions; and building capacity for conflict management on a community level through conducting mediations and capacity building workshops in conflict management and legal matters.

The Burundi Intervention’s long term vision consists of enabling the various stakeholders to internalise the skills provided by ACCORD and utilise them toward sustainable peace in Burundi. One way the Burundi Intervention is already achieving this goal is through the capacity building workshops in conflict management that have been conducted for community leaders. Following the relevant workshops ACCORD has noted more than 250 cases that were successfully resolved by community leaders without assistance from the ACCORD Burundi Intervention staff. Taking into account this experience and others, ACCORD Burundi Intervention will continue to build local capacity throughout the country for the constructive resolution of disputes, as well as the promotion of dialogue and reconciliation.

Latest News from ACCORD

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ACCORD receives the Mahatma Gandhi International Award for Reconciliation and Peace

ACCORD has received the Mahatma Gandhi International (MAGI) Award for Reconciliation and Peace, awarded by the Gandhi Development Trust (GDT), for its 22 years of work in promoting peace and the constructive resolution of disputes globally.

28-08-2014 in General

ACCORD partners with UN Peacebuilding Fund for workshop on Political Nature of Peacebuilding

The United Nations (UN) Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO) and the UN Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) field staff have been seeking to develop coherence between one another, and to enhance their relationships with other institutions, especially ACCORD and the governments of PBF...

28-08-2014 in Peacebuilding

ACCORD conducts Electoral Alternate Dispute Resolution workshop with the Electoral Commissioners Forum (ECF) of SADC

From 18-20 August 2014, ACCORD conducted a workshop on election-related Alternate Dispute Resolution Mechanisms with the Electoral Commissioners Forum of the Southern African Development Community (ECF-SADC). This workshop, which convened approximately thirty Chairpersons and Chief Electoral Officers from the election...

26-08-2014 in Elections

ACCORD Celebrates Nelson Mandela Day by contributing to Abalindi Welfare Society

On Friday, 18 July 2014, the ACCORD Staff, in partnership with the Gandhi Development Trust (GDT), celebrated the annual international Nelson Mandela Day by devoting a day of community service and volunteering in support of the Abalindi Old Age and...

22-08-2014 in General

TfP/ACCORD train UNMISS civil affairs officers on conflict analysis and reporting

The Training for Peace (TfP) Programme at ACCORD was requested by the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) to conduct a training for its International and National Civil Affairs Officers (CAOs) on Conflict Analysis and Reporting. This training aimed...

12-08-2014 in Peacekeeping

TfP/ACCORD serve as panelists at peace operations workshop in Malawi

The Training for Peace in Africa Programme at ACCORD (TfP/ACCORD) has participated in a 'Policy to Practice: Peace Operations in Africa Workshop' in Lilongwe, Malawi. The workshop focused on linking the expectations of United Nations (UN) chapter seven missions to...

12-08-2014 in Peacekeeping

ACCORD co-hosts 4th International Africa Peace and Conflict Resolution conference in partnership with the Centre for African Peace and Conflict…

The recently-held Fourth International Africa Peace and Conflict Resolution Conference provided an important platform for African and American academics and practitioners working in the fields of conflict and alternative dispute resolution (ADR) to share knowledge and discuss the theory and...

11-08-2014 in Knowledge Production

ACCORD facilitates key COMESA forum meetings in Seychelles

In recognition of the support that it has provided to the African Union and Regional Economic Communities in the last 22 years, ACCORD has continued to be invited to participate in high level forums in the continent in order to...

30-07-2014 in Peacemaking

ACCORD/TFP take part in 20th IAPTC annual conference and host training methodologies bilateral meeting

As a member of IAPTC, the Training for Peace in Africa Programme at ACCORD (TfP/ACCORD) have participated at this year's IAPTC Annual Conference to further strengthen and broaden the understanding of the African peace operations issues as well as the...

30-07-2014 in Peacekeeping

ACCORD participate in Peace Capacities Network 2014 annual meeting in Istanbul

The Training for Peace (TfP) in Africa Programme and Africa Peacebuilding Coordination Programme (APCP) at ACCORD have participated in the 2014 Peace Capacities (PeaceCap) Network's Annual Partners Meeting. As the South Africa's representative in the Network, ACCORD's participation in the...

30-07-2014 in Peacekeeping

TfP ACCORD participates in European Union Police Service Training – Exercise LOWLANDS GRENADE

The Training for Peace Programme at ACCORD has participated in the 2014 European Union Police Service Training (EUPST) session which focused on the development of a rapid deployment capability of police elements in crisis management operations, and to train and...

25-07-2014 in Peacekeeping

ACCORD participates in launch and Implementation Workshop of AU Gender, Peace and Security Programme

As part of its efforts to mainstream gender into its activities, the African Union Commission Peace and Security Department (PSD) formulated and commissioned a Gender, Peace and Security Programme (GPSP) under the Peace and Security Department. The GPSP is a...

22-07-2014 in Women

Official visit to ACCORD by Minister of Communication and National Reconciliation of Central African Republic

ACCORD hosted the Minister of Communication and Reconciliation from the Central African Republic (CAR), H.E. Madam Antoinette Montaigne Moussa, from 30th May-2nd June, in Durban, South Africa. The visit was intended to explore possible collaborative activities and partnership between the...

17-07-2014 in Executive

ACCORD takes part in workshop on regional and national statistical capacities for measuring peace, rule of law and governance

Peace, rule of law and governance are measurable and a key component of development indicators in Africa. This was the conclusion of a workshop held from 11–12 June 2014 at the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Hosted by...

11-07-2014 in Knowledge Production

ACCORD trains key Liberian peacebuilding actors in peacebuilding skills and project management

ACCORD is firmly involved in the peacebuilding and reconciliation process in Liberia through supporting local actors and building the capacity of implementing partners of the Reconciliation Roadmap. The most recent training, done in collaboration by the Peacebuilding Unit and Training...

03-07-2014 in Peacebuilding

ACCORD’s Vasu Gounden presents Perspectives of African Non-state Actors during 10th Anniversary Celebrations of the African Union Peace and Security…

As a cornerstone in the African Union (AU)'s quest for peace and security on the continent and as one of the main pillars of the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA), the Peace and Security Council (PSC) commemorated its 10th...

24-06-2014 in Knowledge Production

ACCORD participates in African Union mediation support capacity strategy meeting in Addis Ababa

ACCORD's commitment to support the mediation capacity of the African Union (AU) continues to be reinforced through the implementation of a three year project titled the AU Mediation Support Capacity Project and which is in its second phase. The project...

23-06-2014 in Peacemaking

ACCORD’s Peacebuilding Unit conduct research trip to better understand dynamics at play in South Sudan

In order to be relevant and contextualised to a changing environment, the Peacebuilding Unit at ACCORD conducted a research trip to Juba, South Sudan. Through meeting with peacebuilding partners and other actors on the ground, the Unit has deepened its...

18-06-2014 in Peacebuilding