Concluding Speech Given by His Excellency the President of Burundi for the Training Workshops Held Between September 26th and October 1st 2005

His Excellency Ambassador Howard Wolpe,

Ladies and Gentlemen members of the Government,

Ladies and Gentlemen members of the Presidency,

Ladies and Gentlemen members of Burundi Leadership Training Program, BLTP,

The United Nations SSR/DDR Chief Officer in Burundi:

Please allow me to congratulate the project managers and participants to the special training that lasted a week.

The main goal of such training was to reinforce the capacity-building, with regards to leadership, of a state that just emerged from a ten-year war.

The active participation that we witnessed shows the eagerness of the team, despite challenges, in finding the right solutions to the healing of a society harmed by a long crisis.

The training principally focused on:

Negotiation Techniques and Challenges: This workshop deserved to be on the training agenda because a group leader often has to engage in negotiations. The workshop will help government officials understand how to perform negotiation and mediation. We are convinced that they will apply the training to their daily lives.

Active Communication and Decision-Making: The teaching method used to introduce participants to active communication, and its role in negotiation and decision-making process, helped participants realize the importance of active listening in dealing with conflicts. The rich exchanges on the subject were helpful in elucidating the misconceptions on questions of how to reach a consensus. It will certainly have a positive impact on the Burundian society.

The SIMSOC Excercises were astonishing. They help emphasize on the challenges and difficulties in managing a society. The question of substance, as well as development, generates different behaviors within a society. Leaders have to anticipate, understand or resolve the consequences of such behaviors.

During the training workshops and through their interactions with each other, participants overcame a lot of challenges that they are likely to face in their real-life responsibilities. This proves that, indeed, the training met the expectations of the participants and its results will soon be seen.

The four quadrants technique and relationship mapping in the understanding of problems, together, constitute a method that will be used in identifying and resolving key issues that the government faces.

At present, the interactions within groups on questions of economic reconstruction, national reconciliation, and planning of public services, are exercises that show how to approach certain issues in order to meet the well-being need of the population.

His Excellency Ambassador Howard Wolpe,

Ladies and Gentlemen project managers of this training,

Ladies and Gentlemen participants to the training:

We would like to thank you again for your efforts in trying to benefit from your mutual relationships this week. We realize that, in addition to the main goal, as mentioned above, we will see more goals resulting from the training. It is a stronger relationship and a common understanding of the challenges that the country faces. The knowledge and skills acquired through this training will certainly help us be more useful to our society. Indeed, a French saying goes, "When ideas are put together, it creates enlightenment." This training is not the first one and certainly will not be the last one. We think that more similar training seminaries could be organized in the future. Hence, I declare the end of the Training Workshops held from September 26th to October 1st in Bujumbura.

Long live the Republic of Burundi.

Long the Woodrow Wilson Center and the BLTP.

Long life to Continuing Education and the reinforcement of abilities.

May God bless you all!