Burundi Society

Burundi Sports

Proportion of literate adults: 59% (2019)

Major religions: Christian 78%, Islam 3-4%, other religions

Urban population: 12.67% (2017)

Life expectancy: 63.0 years (women) 59.4 years (men) (2018)

Gender Inequality Index (GII): Rank 124 out of 162 (2018), value: 0.52

Birth rate per 1000 people: 41.5 (forecast 2020)

Infant mortality: 61.2 per thousand live births (2017)

Urban-rural dualism

According to militarynous, Burundian society shows a differentiation between an urban population with higher incomes and a rural population with more or less severe poverty. The rural poorer sections of the population predominate. In addition to ethnic-social problems, this strong urban-rural dualism is responsible for diverse differences and conflicts. The social reality in today’s Burundi shows a broad section of the population still strongly threatened by poverty and hunger, which also lives mostly in rural areas and from agriculture. In other low-wage areas as well as guards or domestic servants, people earn little. There is daily struggle for survival, the housing situation is poor, the diet is insufficient in terms of both quantity and quality, access to health services is limited, and educational opportunities are poor. In contrast, there is a small “middle class” and an even smaller “upper class”which is mainly concentrated in the capital Bujumbura and to which the Tutsi ethnic group seems to belong. Even if the social differentiation was historically not ethnically determined – a Hutu could definitely become a Tutsi – Tutsi were mainly in the “upper class” before, but also after the colonial era, Hutu mainly in the “under class”. The conflicts in the political landscape of Burundi hardly affect the rural population, except that their situation continues to deteriorate.

The rural population works almost entirely in and for subsistence farming. Crafts have only a small share of GDP, the informal sector is important. An intensive promotion of the handicrafts, especially for the rural areas, would have a positive effect on the income situation of the population, which is heavily dependent on agriculture. In addition, corruption and mismanagement hinder the correct taxation of the population and the use of tax money. Many elites have left the country or have emigrated since 2015 due to the poor political and economic situation. However, their influence is from abroad discussed on the development of the country. In Burundi, minorities like the Twa, but also street children and people with disabilities experience economic and social exclusion.



The rural population often walks for kilometers to the market and back again, lives from heavy agricultural work in the fields and has problems with hunger, malnutrition and malnutrition: this makes it clear that sport as a means of compensating movement is only interesting for the urban population with a predominantly sedentary lifestyle. In Bujumbura there are a number of fitness studios in increasing numbers, many of which are also attached to hotels. One form of workout is called “GymTonic” in Burundi. Men like to play football or basketball in local clubs on weekends. The modest successes of the Burundian national soccer team(Nickname: “The warlike swallows”) are limited to reaching the quarter-finals of the East / Central African Championships several times. Participation in world or African championships has not yet been successful in the history of the association. The president also plays football – often with a media impact. But you have to be careful not to approach him too roughly in the game, otherwise you risk imprisonment.

The upper class – and especially the youth – often train their fitness on the beach, including beach volleyball. There is a riding stables in Bujumbura, you can swim in the swimming pools of larger hotels and also in Lake Tanganijka.

Burundi also regularly takes part in the Olympic Games. VĂ©nuste Niyongabo, born in Burundi in 1973, became a gold medalist in athletics over the 5000m in 1996. For a long time it was the only medal for Burundi at the Olympic Games. In 2016 the Burundian athlete Francine Niyonsaba won- Born in 1993 – the gold medal over 800m at the World Indoor Championships. In 2017 Niyonsaba won the silver medal in the 800m at the World Athletics Championships in London. The discussion about whether the athlete has too high testosterone levels to run with the women keeps growing up. Another well-known Burundian athlete is Diane Nukuri, who has won many races and is still active.

Burundi Sports