CIPESA Joins Call Urging Burundi Gov’t To #KeepItOn During Elections

Joint Letter |

The Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) has joined 30 international human  rights advocacy groups of the #KeepItOn coalition in urging authorities in Burundi to ensure that the May 20, 2020 elections will be void of any network disruption of digital communications  and to enable voters to freely elect their leaders.

The state of internet freedom in Burundi has been precarious due to the continued tightened  control over independent media and critical online publishers by the government. See the 2019 report on the State of Internet Freedom in Burundi

The coalition has submitted a joint letter to the government of Burundi to ensure open, secure and stable access to the internet and social media platforms throughout the country’s presidential elections. The signatories appealed to the authorities in Burundi to consider the following recommendations to guarantee citizens’ active participation in the elections:

  • Ensure that the internet, including social media and other digital communication platforms, remains accessible throughout the elections
  • Ensure that the Agence de Régulation et de Contrôle des Télécommunications (ARCT) and the Conseil National de la Communication take all the necessary regulatory measures to ensure internet service providers  (ISPs) inform people of any form of disruption or interference in the provision of internet access
  • Order the unblocking of all websites of independent media outlets that are currently inaccessible in the country

. Read the joint letter.