AbleToTrain by Willing & Able

Anticorruption In Burundi

1. What is the legal framework in Burundi for bribery?

The Anti-Bribery Act of 2006 is the main piece of legislation that governs bribery in Burundi. However, laws from other pieces of legislation, such as the Penal Code 2017, are used to in bribery prosecutions.


2. What is the definition of a bribe?

The Anti-Bribery Act does not have a single definition of bribe. The Penal Code, on the other hand, distinguishes between different sorts of bribery. A bribe can be described as a benefit of any type that is proposed, provided, or received in order to obtain or reward an unfair benefit from a person because of their position, as specified by the various regulations.


3. What are the most serious infractions under this legal system?

Bribery and related offenses (e.g. influence peddling, money laundering, property subtraction and embezzlement, fraudulent management, favoritism, unlawful taking of interest) are the main criminal offenses under this legal framework (chapter 2 of the Penal Code).

The following are the most common bribery offenses:

  • a person with governmental authority or a public sector employee, by virtue of their position, demanding or authorizing a bribe;

  • soliciting or authorizing a bribe by a public official for the purpose of committing an unjust act;

  • requesting, accepting, or forcing sexual activity in order to perform or refrain from performing an act within their power; and

  • a person not entrusted with public authority asking or sanctioning a bribe


4. What is the legal framework’s jurisdictional scope?

When any conduct that is part of the offense of bribery or similar offenses defined in the Anti-bribery Act occurs, the anti-bribery court has jurisdiction (article 22). The Burundian authorities take jurisdiction if the wrongdoing happens in Burundi, despite the fact that the jurisdictional reach is not indicated.


5. Who can be held accountable for bribery? (government officials, private citizens, legal entities, and so on.)

  • Officials and public servants;

  • individuals who are not performing a public function; and

  • foreign public personnel, officials of international public organizations and non-governmental organizations, as well as legal entities


6. Can a parent firm be held accountable for bribery committed by a subsidiary?

On the basis of a power of representation, power of control, and power of decision-making, a company can be punished for bribery committed by its representatives, those who occupy positions of responsibility in the firm, and those who act on its behalf (Article 64 of the Anti-bribery Act).

Consequently, even if the Act does not expressly state it, a parent business may be held accountable for bribery committed by its subsidiary if the action was motivated by or related to the parent and subsidiary business’s association.


7. Are bribes considered facilitation payments (small payments to expedite regular government action)?

Yes, the act of soliciting or approving, without right, any kind of advantage in order to execute or abstain from executing an act of a person’s function or mandate is covered by the Anti-bribery Act.


8. Is there any restriction on political and charity contributions under the law?

Political or philanthropic contributions are not specifically prohibited; but, if they are made for any of the forbidden purposes listed here, they may be deemed bribes.


9. Is corporate hospitality subject to any legal restrictions?

Corporate hospitality is not specifically included in the legal framework, but it could be regarded a crime if it is used for any of the banned purposes.


10. Do bribery offenses have any defenses?

Yes, indeed. Except in the case of recidivism in a case of corruption, a person who discloses the offense to an administrative or judicial authority and identifies other persons involved before any prosecution is exempt from punishment.


11. What are the main anti-bribery regulatory or enforcement bodies?

The government has established particular institutions to detect and combat bribery. The Audit Office, the Main Inspection Office, the Anti-Corruption Special Squad, and the Anti-Corruption Court are among them.


12. What are the legal ramifications of being convicted of bribery?

On convicted, individuals face up to 15 years in prison and/or an unlimited fine.

On conviction, legal persons face an infinite fine.

Individuals may be subjected to additional sanctions. Forfeiture, restriction from enjoying civil, political, and familial rights as specified by law, and a ban on foreigners entering Burundian territory for a defined period of not less than five years are among the consequences.