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Burundi Culture and Traditions

Customs and traditions

As a visitor in Burundi, it may be wise not to go too fast in the contacts with people you meet. A half-century of violence and racist public rhetoric has led some Burundians to look with some distrust at strangers.

Politeness, discretion and restraint can be described as basic rules in the interaction with and between burundians. Conversations can initially address neutral and uncontroversial topics such as weather, health and children. Avoid asking questions about someone's private circumstances. Do not talk about the country's ethnic conflict and do not discuss politics with strangers. Sexuality is usually taboo as a topic of conversation.

  • Countryaah: Overview of the capital city of Burundi, including information about its population, economy, geography, history and map.

At an initial contact, you must greet politely. Never be a person who is not a close friend, rather be formal in socializing. It is also advisable to dress up a little too much, rather than dress too easily and risk being considered uninjured.

Easy eating

Do not stand too close to the person you are talking to unless you are close acquaintances and avoid direct eye contact during the conversation. Avoid gesticulating with your hands and try to keep the features in check. Expressing feelings and thoughts through mineplay and gestures is easily perceived as a sign that you are unbalanced.

Anyone who receives an invitation to a Burundian family may expect that the food served is robust and simple. It may appear with meat or fish to honor the guest, but the meeting takes place in everyday forms, most likely the food consists of root vegetables, cooking bananas, beans, sweet potatoes and cabbage. Probably also served ugali, a thick porridge of cassava or corn flour. Probably beer also appears, either the same kind of light beer as in the rest of the world, or maybe impeke brewed on sorghum. Impeke usually drinks with straw from a large common container. Urwarwa is a popular wine made from bananas. To refuse food or drink offered is very unfair.

Culture and Traditions of BurundiHolidays and Holidays

In Burundi, the usual Christian and Muslim celebrations are celebrated. The first non-religious public holiday of the year is the unity day on February 5, in memory of the 1992 referendum on a new constitution that would bridge the contradictions between Hutu and Tutsi. On July 1, since 1962, Independence Day is celebrated. On October 13, Rwagasore Day is dedicated to the country's first people-elected prime minister, Prince Louis Rwagasore, who was assassinated this day in 1961. Just over a week later, it's time for Ndadaye Day in memory of the first democratically elected president, as well as the first head of state, Melchior. Ndadadye, who was murdered that day in 1993, shortly after taking power. Finally, on November 28, the Republic Day is celebrated in memory of the abolition of the monarchy in 1966.

Among traditional festivals related to indigenous religions, the harvest festival kubandwa is noticed when celebrating Kiranga, the leader of the spirits of the deceased. It is a party with lots of singing and dancing. Young men paint and decorate their bodies and one of them represents Kiranga. The festivities end with a ritual purification bath in a river. During the fertility festival umuganoru, a girl, who is innocent, initiates the dredging to the accompaniment of a sanctified drum.

2009

November

FNL leader Rwasa is running for president

Agathon Rwasa, leader of the former Huturebeller FNL, announces that he will run in the 2010 presidential election.

September

New electoral law is adopted

Parliament adopts a new electoral law which stipulates, among other things, that all political offices down to the municipal level should be appointed by universal suffrage;

April

The death penalty is abolished

Parliament adopts new criminal laws. The death penalty is abolished, the age of the criminal authorities is increased from 13 years to 15 years and the penalty is increased for inhumane treatment of children.

FNL becomes a political party

The former hutumilis FNL is registered as a political party as part of the peace agreement with the government.

February

Debt is written off

Donor countries within the so-called Paris Club write off Burundi's debt of $ 134.3 million.

FNL is disarmed

The Huturebeller FNL begins, in accordance with an agreement with the government, to surrender its weapons.

January

Burundi ready for debt cancellation

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank announce that Burundi is now meeting the debt amortization requirements in accordance with the two loan agencies' HIPC programs for heavily indebted poor countries.

FNL puts down its weapons

Huturebellerna FNL ends the armed struggle. In return, the government releases imprisoned FNL members.


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