The Executive Secretary of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, Ambassador Liberata Mulamula in talks with Mr Joseph Butiku, the Executive Director of the Mwalimu Julius Nyerere Foundation who visited the Great Lakes Secretariate in Bujumbura, Burundi, for a working session with the ICGLR Secretariat. Mr Butiku was accompanied by Mr. Miraji Magai, a Programme Officer.
The Executive Secretary of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, Ambassador Liberata Mulamula received today in her office Mr Joseph Butiku, the Executive Director of the Mwalimu Julius Nyerere Foundation who visited Burundi for a working session with the ICGLR Secretariat. Mr Butiku was accompanied by Mr. Miraji Magai, a Programme Officer.
The Mwalimu Nyerere Foundation has been actively engaged and played an important role in the ICGLR process since at the early stages. In this regard, the Mwalimu Nyerere Foundation was chosen to represent civil society organizations at the regional level during the ICGLR process.
The Mwalimu Nyerere foundation had organized successfully preparatory meetings among them the “Kampala Symposium” held in 2002 aimed at reinforcing unity and solidarity among the people of the region. The Symposium gathered people from different horizons and was attended by the Regional Leaders. During the working session with the ICGLR Secretariat, Mr Butiku pointed out that all the initiatives that had been undertaken by the Foundation drew their wisdom from Mwalimu Nyerere who always emphasized “No peace is achievable without involving the people”.
The Meeting between the ICGLR Secretariat and Mr. Butiku focused on how to establish a Regional Forum of Civil Society as stipulated in the Pact on Security, Stability and Development in the Great Lakes Region. The ICGLR fora of Parliaments, women, and youth have already been established and are operational. The ICGLR and the Mwalimu Nyerere Foundation have planned to work together so as to facilitate and coordinate the establishment of the Forum.
The ICGLR Secretariat through its program officer in charge of Democracy and Good Governance provided guidance and advised the civil society in the region to form steering committee that will accelerate the process of establishing the Forum.
In concluding the meeting, the Executive Secretary of the ICGLR Ambassador Mulamula assured Mzee Butiku of the ICGLR’s commitment and support and called upon the civil society in the region to be actively engaged in the search for peace and stability and to strongly condemn the continued crimes particularly sexual violence against women and children perpetrated by the armed groups in eastern DRC and in other parts of the region.