Article written

  • on 26.05.2015
  • at 07:00 PM
  • by Kevin Hind

Standing Tall by Antoine Kaburahe – Iwacu 0

Following the recently failed coup, Iwacu is the sole remaining independent media left in Burundi. In this editorial, Iwacu’s director Antoine Kaburahe laments the difficulties the Burundian independent media face as well as discussing his hopes for the political future of Burundi.

To keep standing. In spite of everything, of being filled with fear, of gunshots puncturing the night, of all the dead and wounded. All this for nothing.

Keep standing despite burned newsrooms, terrified colleagues, either in hiding or on the run. Not thinking too much about what we were, about this dynamic, pluralistic press, respected in the country and on the continent. This press has gone up in smoke in one night.

Keep standing. Strive to survive, because survival is what it is all about. Fighting against despair, self-censorship, striving every day only to do one’s job: witness, see and tell. Without always understanding. Can one really understand how it is that a country can fall – politically and economically – this far in full view of us all?

Yet not everyone. Some claim that all is well in Burundi, that “the elections will go well” … After all, the unrest is limited to merely “a few neighborhoods in the capital”.

Against this “minority”, an expression used knowingly with a clear double meaning, it just requires a few trigger-happy policeman for “the power the people gave us” not to be stolen.  ‘Ubutegetsi twiherewe n’abanya gihugu’ has thus become a slogan.

Except that, and this is the only good news, Burundians have made a giant step forward in becoming politically conscious as this “minority”, despite those who want to ethicize the dispute, is multiethnic.

Sure of having the consent of the silent and docile rural areas, the regime persists and minimizes the protest “of the capital”. Yet, as pointed out by François Soudan in the Pan-African weekly magazine Jeune Afrique, “in Africa, you win or lose the power in the capitals”.

by Antoine Kaburahe

Translated by Evelina C. Urgolo

Photo Credit: Infos Grands Lacs

Click Here to read the original editorial in French

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