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The East African : April 7th 2014
14 The EastAfrican NEWS APRIL 5-11,2014 Pa≥ty fights fo≥ Nku≥unziza to ≥un OIL PRODUCTION CHALLENGES By LUCAS BARASA The EastAfrican CONFUSION REIGNS in Burundi following the ruling party’s insistence that President Pierre Nkurunziza will vie for a third term in next year’s election despite parliament’s rejection of his bid. Interior Minister Edouard Nduwimana said that although Parliament voted to preserve the Constitutional two-term limit, President Nkurunziza will still vie. “There are people who want to believe that the question of another term is closed… That is not true,” said Mr Nduwimana. The ruling CNDD-FDD failed to marshal enough support in Parliament on March 21, to change the Constitution. Opposition parties boycotted the parliamentary session as they felt the amendments would have undermined reconciliation agreements that ended the country’s long ethnic-based civil war that saw 300,000 people killed. The government wanted to create a post of prime minister and reduce the role of the senate in overseeing the ethnic balance in State institutions but it fell one vote short of the required 80 per cent majority. Last week, Burundians in the diaspora held demonstrations to protest attempts by President Nkurunziza to change the Constitution and vie for a third term. The protests were held in Toronto, Canada Washington DC, USA and Brussels, Belgium where a meeting of European Union and African lead- “The question of another term is not closed.” Interior Minister ers was going on. They called on President Nkurunziza’s government to stop political violence in the country and release all political prisoners. They said his regime should respect the law and freedoms provided for in the Constitution. Burundi’s current basic law, which dates back to the end of the civil war, says the President can serve two directly-elected terms. A separate clause says the first post-war leader will be indirectly elected by lawmakers — as President Nkurunziza went on to be. Under the planned chang- es, the latter clause was to be deleted allowing the President to run again. According to Burundi’s laws, the failure means the changes can now only be re-introduced in parliament after a year, just months before the country’s elections slated for June next year. A road in Hoima Town. The govt is being sued over land issues in Albertine Graben. Pic: Morgan Mbabazi Civil suits stall Uganda refinery, highway plans The count≥y’s human ≥ights body faults the gove≥nment fo≥ not doing mo≥e to safegua≥d land owne≥s By GAAKI KIGAMBO Special Correspondent CALL FOR NOMINATIONS FOR REGIONAL CIVIL SOCIETY ADVISORY GROUP Background UN Women Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Office (ESARO) based in Nairobi is setting up a Regional Civil Society Advisory Group for Eastern and Southern Africa which will provide space for enhancing collaboration between UN Women and CSOs. Goals for the CSAG include: 1. To foster strategic dialogue and engagement, with a view of addressing the root causes of gender inequalities and advance goals of gender equality and women’s empowerment; 2. To provide a forum to enable mutually beneficial consultations between UN Women and civil society and draw upon the rich and diverse expertise, experience, outreach and networks, perspective and knowledge that civil society can offer on a timely and effective basis; 3. To serve as a consultative forum to agree on regional priorities and develop joint strategies to inform UN women’s programmes in Eastern and Southern Africa. Membership The regional Civil Society Advisory Group will have 12 members (women and men) who are committed to the core values of the United Nations and to the mission of UN Women. Members will serve for a period of two years. A third of the members will serve for a period of three years to ensure continuity. Nomination process: • UN Women will circulate the call for nomination through existing regional and national gender equality, women’s rights and women’s empowerment networks/coalitions, organizations and movements and the media. Nominations should be sent to UN Women, Regional Office for Eastern and Southern Africa, UN Complex, Gigiri, Block M, P.O. Box 30218-00100, Nairobi, Kenya or to Consultancies.email@example.com with the subject line; REF: REGIONAL CIVIL SOCIETY ADVISORY GROUP (CSAG) FOR EASTERN AND SOUTHERN AFRICA. • The nominations should include the following: Name, organization and contact details of the person nominating; Name, organization and contact details of the nominee; a short description (less than one page) on why the nominee would be a suitable candidate for the CSAG and a detailed CV of the nominee • The deadline for receiving nominations is 18th April, 2014. Serving in the advisory group is considered voluntary work and UN Women will only cover travel expenses of the members for the group’s meetings. Organizations wishing to nominate a candidate to be a member of the Regional CSAG will find more information in the Terms of Reference which include the selection process and criteria, that can be downloaded on UNDP Website at: http://www.ke.undp.org/content/ kenya/en/home/operations/procurement/Call-for-nomination-RCSAG.html to construct an oil refinery on and build a new highway to ease the challenges faced in oil production. Analysts have condemned U the government’s approach as unfair and unconstitutional, saying it is a source of growing anxiety in the affected communities. They said the disputes may derail the development of the country’s most promising sector. The suits follow a special report released by the country’s Human Rights Commission late last month that faults the government for not doing more to safeguard human rights in its acquisition of land for oil exploration and production. The Commission said there is an absence of mechanisms to address issues of the 7,118 people that the refinery is set to displace. “Denying people the right to participate in decisions, policies, processes and practices in the oil and gas industry would have far-reaching ramifications for achieving the development goals in Uganda as it would negatively affect human rights,” the report reads in part. On March 28, 10 residents representing 86 households in Kabaale Parish, the chosen site for the oil refinery, in Buseruka sub-county, Hoima District, filed a civil suit in the High Court in Kampala after trying in vain to petition the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, ganda faces two civil suits over land it intends parliament and other government offices. They said the Ministry has stopped them from using and developing their land since June 2012 without compensation. They added that the way the Ministry assessed their land was inadequate and to date those who opted to be relocated have not been resettled. On the same day, in the Land Division, Otto Michael Gulamali, the deputy registrar of the High Court, issued an interim order restraining Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA), or anyone acting on their behalf, from any further construction work on the Hoima-KaisoTonya road until July, when the main application involving complaints of undervaluation, and therefore lower compensation, of some land appropriated for the road, is cleared. According to the plaintiffs, MISTAKES Government stands accused. A special report released by the country’s Human Rights Commission late last month that faults the government for not doing more to safeguard human rights in its acquisition of land for oil exploration and production. No mechanisms. The Commission said there is an absence of mechanisms to address issues of the 7,118 people that the refinery is set to displace. UNRA, through its valuation contractor Mapcon Consults, undervalued some of their property, ignored and/or refused to value others. The agency further ignored their dissatisfaction or alternate valuations carried out by a private company they had hired. Instead, it went ahead to commission the Turkish Koln Construction to begin road works on the land and destroy their property. However, the agency said the government already instructed for a review of compensations, which was done and top-ups made where they discovered that undervaluation had occurred, or in some cases the property had not been valued. Road works blocked “Nearly 75 per cent of the road is complete. We had hoped to finish by August but the order blocks all works until July. We can’t accept that and we are going to challenge it,” said Dan Alinange, the agency’s spokesperson. Constitutionally, any dis- pute resolution in respect to land, and especially the kind of disagreement that rises out of how much the government needs to pay in compensation, is vested with District Land Tribunals. In most of the Albertine districts, however, these District Land Tribunals do not exist or lie dormant because they lack money to operate. According to the refinery project development schedule, the 29 square-kilometre Kabaale Parish should be available by June in time for the announcement of the successful lead investor/operator for the development, implementation and operation of the 60,000 barrels per day oil refinery and related downstream infrastructure.
March 31st 2014
April 14th 2014