FACILITATOR: Former Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa addressing delegates at the just-concluded Inter-Burundi Dialogue

Former Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa is set to hold talks with Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni over the crisis in Burundi.

Addressing over 80 delegates at the closure of the four-day Inter-Burundi Dialogue Mkapa, who is the facilitator of talks, said he would brief Mr Museveni, the East Africa Community (EAC) appointed Mediator, on the progress registered during the talks.

MEDIATOR: President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the Mediator of the Inter-Burundi Dialogue
MEDIATOR: President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the EAC-appointed Mediator of the Inter-Burundi Dialogue

‘In the next two weeks, I will continue and complete the consultations with those who did not come during this session, but whom I feel might have positive contributions to make to the process. I will also consult with the Mediator (Museveni) in order to determine the way forward. Thereafter, I expect to convene a dialogue session possibly during the third week of June,’ Mkapa was quoted as saying.

He also lauded the international partners, saying their participation was encouraging

I wish to thank you all for coming to Arusha to participate in consultations on the Inter – Burundi Dialogue. The high turnout has been very impressive and I feel very encouraged. I am also particularly touched by the presence of our international partners who have expressed support to the process,’ Mr Mkapa said.

The Inter-Burundi Dialogue was attended by among others representatives from Burundi’s political actors including civil society organizations, women, youth, religious groups.

‘During these four days, we have had very fruitful consultations. At any moment there were no acrimonious interventions. All of you showed a high degree of civility, patriotism and a great desire to own the dialogue. It is evident that you are yearning for peace and a stop to killings and assassinations…I hope that during your stay here in Arusha, you were able to interact and exchange widely on issues of general concern,’ Mr Mkapa told the delegates.

Burundi descended into chaos last year, following President Pierre Nkurunziza’s announcement that he would seek a third term.

Since then over 400 people have been killed and thousands have fled the country.