Home | Site Map | Flux RSS |               

Assemblée Nationale du Burundi


Home » English » Law Vote » Analysis and adoption in plenary


publie le Thursday 16 March 2023
parCommunication and Spokesperson’s Office

The establishment of the single judge institution and the assignment of officers of the public prosecutor’s office to the courts of residence are some of the innovations contained in the draft organic law amending law No. 1/08 of March 17, 2005 on the code of judiciary organization and competence, which was analyzed and adopted during the plenary session of Monday, February 13, 2023.

For the Minister of Justice, having noticed that one or other magistrate takes refuge behind the principle of collegiality in decision-making to escape responsibility, the bill proposes the introduction of a single judge in some matters. That will enable the magistrate in charge of the case to assume and take responsibility for taking decisions in accordance with the law.
It is also a question of making judges more liable for their decisions to the Burundian people, whom they are bound to serve.
Moreover, the single-judge system will make it possible to clear the flow of pending cases in a timely manner.

Moreover, the institution of the single judge is not new in our legislation. The law under review also limited it to particular matters.
Finally, given that the judge will be alone in the decision-making process, he or she will have to learn, do research, consult and compare the various sources of law in order to come up with a good decision because there will be mechanisms for assessing magistrates on the basis of the decisions they have made.
Regarding the second innovation, the code under review foresees the representation of the public prosecutor’s office in the courts of residence sitting in criminal matters and in certain civil matters that concern public order. However, the public prosecutor’s office is not organized in these courts.

At present, the representation of the public prosecutor’s office is ensured by officers from the public prosecutor’s office, whose headquarters are in the capital of the province. Due to the remoteness of the public prosecutor’s office from the courts of residence and the lack of means of travel for the officers of the public prosecutor’s office, the representation is not effective. The consequence is that a large number of criminal and civil cases requiring the presence of the public prosecutor’s office remain pending for a long time in the courts of residence, which is an obstacle to the speed of justice.

In order to avoid blocking the proceeding of criminal cases in the jurisdiction of the courts of residence due to the distance of the public prosecutor’s office from the seat of the court and the lack of means for the public prosecutor’s officers to travel, the bill provides for the assignment of permanent public prosecutor’s officers to the courts of residence.
Crimes are categorized. The institution of a single judge is required for criminal cases, land disputes and debt insolvency. However, for land disputes, it is the collateral mediators who will first deal with them.

Moreover, the single judge institution is also called upon to rule in cases of contraventions, i.e. sentences ranging from one to three years, and misdemeanors (one to five years). But for crimes (five years and more), the jury must be composed of three judges.
University degree is required for residence court judges. Holders of A2 degree will be replaced over time, when they pass from life to death or when they retire.

pied page |