Thursday, August 16, 2019, Burundi joined other nations of the world to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development.
The ceremonies were held at Vyegwa stadium in Ngozi province, in the presence of the First Lady of the country, HE Denise Nkurunziza. The ceremonies were co-organized by the Ministry of Health and the Fight against VIH/Sida, and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) under the theme “Ensuring rights for Reproductive Health and Choices for All”.
The celebration included the participation of senior State officials, representatives of the accredited diplomatic and consular corps in Bujumbura, including the United Nations Resident Coordinator and the UNFPA Country Director, as well as the people of Ngozi province who had responded massively.
In his speech, the United Nations Resident Coordinator welcomed the step he had taken to achieve the goals set by the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) to which Burundi is a signatory. By way of illustration, in order to overcome the growing population in Burundi, the birth rate has increased from 7 children per woman in 1994 to 5 children per woman in 2017. The Resident Coordinator recalled that these results were obtained thanks to the combined efforts of the Government of Burundi and the United Nations system, including UNFPA.
On that occasion, the Resident Coordinator presented to the First Lady of Burundi, on behalf of the UNFPA Regional Director, a Certificate of Honour in recognition of her contribution in raising awareness among administrative and religious leaders, women and youth, to achieve the goals of the ICPD.
Speaking in turn, the Minister of Health and Fight against HIV, for his part, recalled the objectives set by the Government of Burundi, which plan to limit births to 3 children per family by 2025. He also emphasized on the role of parents in achieving those goals to ensure not only the physical and material development of children and women, but also the development of the country.
Indeed, it was observed that population growth was not proportional to the economic growth of our country. The Ministry of Health also praised the action and support of the First Lady of Burundi to public health programs and awarded her a Certificate of Recognition.
in her occasional speech, Her Excellency Denise Nkurunziza, the First Lady returned to the achievements and challenges of Burundi in the pursuit of the objectives of the ICPD, which will be achieved if and only if each Burundian decides to become an agent of change. The First Lady of Burundi warmly thanked all the partners, national and international, for their precious collaboration.
She urged Burundian families to make family planning their priority, a veritable guarantor of the country’s development: “Rapid population growth is a brake on the development of families and the country. The State of Burundi cannot take care of all children even if efforts are made, especially through free primary education and health care for pregnant women and children”.