Kangura No. 30

I Am Warning the People of Burundi

Wilfrid Hicuburundi

I am warning the people of Burundi, my own kind. I am warning the Hutus, because no one else will deliver them from the slavery in which they live. Everywhere else, those who are suffering and oppressed are themselves dealing with their problems and finding solutions to them.

No white man, no foreigner, no Tutsi will solve the problem of the Hutus in Burundi unless those concerned deal with them themselves. Any other person who would understand this problem will only come to lend them a hand.

I am warning these Hutus who think that the problems will solve themselves; that the international community will ask the Tutsi government to stop its activities, and that it will agree to do so, or that one day the Tutsi will let go of the power they have of their own free will. The international community gives advice but does not dictate to sovereign countries the policies to adopt.

The international community cooperates in particular with governments in power. Bear in mind that the Tutsi government is also looking for friends. It has friends among the Whites and whenever it has difficulties, it uses money.

Dear fellow Hutus,

Find solutions to your problems; rise up together, including the newborns and the international community will support you.

The Hutus who think that the Tutsi in Burundi will, of their own accord, relinquish power, the honor and advantages they enjoy are mistaken. They are mistaken because since the 1960s to date, no Tutsi organization, no Tutsi government, no Tutsi man or woman, no Tutsi church, none of all the above has defended the interests of the Hutus.

Recently you read and analyzed the letter written by Catholic bishops in which they are blaming the Hutus, praising the Tutsi and the Buyoya regime. Let’s go back in history: when Micombero took over in 1966, the Hutus rejoiced; they thought that the feudal regime was going to surrender its place to the republic. You know how he later treated the Hutus. When Bagaza took over power, the Hutu once again celebrated with joy and thought that someone was coming to liberate them from Micombero. Sometime later, Bagaza went for the Hutus (in 1979), arrested them, killed them, denied them access to schools, employment and closed down their places of worship. The coming of Buyoya was warmly welcomed by the Hutus who said the following: “He is the one we were waiting for.” And yet, he is the worst of them all. In the space of four years, he has killed more than 60,000 Hutus. Dear Hutu brothers, are we devoted to acclaim any newcomer?

I am warning these Hutus who were brought to power and occupied good positions in the administration (ministers, chefs de cabinet, managing directors, and others). Have you already forgotten that you hold that position thanks to the people that you refer to as “peasants” who rose up in the Ntega and Marangara communes and said no to injustice? You owe your comfort to the bloodshed by some and to the exile into which others went. You forget, too, that it is to the Palipehutu party that you owe your position and your situation. The year that is ending will signal your end.

I am warning you again, you, the Hutu authorities in Burundi, because you cause shame. The Palipehutu and the popular masses rose up and foreign countries supported us so that the Hutu can have his dignity and be able to express himself. However, your actions did not meet the’ expectations. The international community and we ourselves had the feeling that you would be the spokesmen of your brothers in distress. Could it by any chance be that you have become these people that the Tutsis refer to as the “egotists, those that we refer to in Kirundi as ‘opportunists.’ ”

It is pitiful to see that Buyoya gave the country to Sibomana (Prime Minister), to Mayugi (Uprona’s Secretary General) and to Kagimbi (Secretary of State for Defense) and that he asked them to exterminate their fellow kind; later, he went to France and that is what happened everywhere else. You are to blame for all the blood of the Hutus who are dead, handicapped or will be reduced to slavery… Sibomana, Mayugi and Kagimbi, isn’t it true that those who are dying are your Hutu own kind? Mend your ways while there is still time and come back to reason. Come out of the darkness and move in to the light. Everything has an end! I am warning all Hutu, young or old, who support the criminal and bloody regime in power in Burundi.

Do you think that he who is today killing your own kind will spare you tomorrow? I am particularly warning these heartless Hutus working for the intelligence service in Burundi and who are selling their own kind. I am referring to those who hide behind the Hutu parties so that they can spy, those who sell the secrets of their own kind to the Tutsi government. Dear friends, give no gifts to the enemy! Very soon, when the Tutsis will no longer need you, you will join your own kind in the grave. Don’t think that I am lying. I am warning the Tutsis in Burundi, me countrymen who, as they kill the Hutus, are worsening the pain and bitterness among the people of Burundi. You have been killing the Hutus for 30 years but they still remain in this country and they have not been reduced to silence.

A day will come when the Hutus will wake up. Would you be happy to be treated like you are treating the Hutus? I hope that situation will never arise!

I am speaking to these Tutsi peasants, to these Tutsis from regions of the country other than Bururi and Jenda, so that they can examine their conscience and think about how they are being treated by the Hima regime. Have you not noticed that these Himas scoff at you and only employ you when their needs have been met? Come and help your brothers fight the Hima regime which has led the country for 25 years (since 1966). When the Himas will have exterminated the Hutus, it will be your turn. Do you not remember that during the Ntega and Marangara events, Buyoya used a helicopter to decimate both the Hutus and Tutsis of Ntega? Remember that event!

I am warning the Twa who are yet to be convinced that they are people of Burundi on the same footing as the others. We know that you have suffered discrimination much more than the Hutus. Rise up and close ranks with the Hutus in order to fight the criminal Tutsi regime. The Palipehutu wants to liberate you too. I am reminding all the people of Burundi (Hutu, Tutsi and Twa) that there is no other way than that of the Palipehutu.

You must all join the Palipehutu, the only party which will eradicate racial and regional injustice as well as the contempt of the authorities. It is the only party defending the interests of the people of Burundi who live in the countryside, defending the interests of the poor, the farmers, livestock breeders and craftsmen.

Forward with Palipehutu!
A Kangura reader
Wilfrid Hicuburundi
Bujumbura, BURUNDI