Burundi President Warns ‘Troublemakers’ Ahead of Anniversary

Pierre Nkurunziza


Burundi President Warns ‘Troublemakers’ Ahead of Anniversary

Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza has issued a message to the nation and severely warned troublemakers as Burundi celebrates Saturday the first anniversary after the country’s 2015 elections.

“This is a warning to all troublemakers. They have to avoid their bad plans. They will fall in the traps that they will have laid,” said Nkurunziza in the message to the nation on Friday evening.

He indicated that the celebration of the first anniversary of institutions elected in 2015 is an opportunity to thank defense and security forces that did their best to foil a coup plot staged on May 13 last year.

“Defense and security forces neutralized the insurgency during the electoral process. Elections were held freely and in transparency and were approved by the local and the international community,” said Nkurunziza.

He added that Burundian citizens are now enjoying peace and security, stressing that they are united in their diversity.

Nkurunziza said, “No genocide will take place and I take this opportunity to denounce ill-intended people who are saying that a genocide is in preparation in Burundi.”

Nkurunziza said that almost 100,000 Burundian citizens who had gone into exile have returned home, while others are preparing to come back home.

“Burundian citizens still living in exile should come back home to build their country and politicians should prepare the 2020 general elections,” said Nkurunziza.

He also commended the step reached in the inter-Burundian dialogue as reported by the National Inter-Burundian Dialogue Commission (CNDI).

Nkurunziza indicated that the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) is at work to shed light on cyclical massacres that happened in Burundi notably in 1961, 1965, 1969, 1972, 1988, 1991 and in 1993.

While acknowledging that Burundi’s economy has been destabilized due to troublemakers, Nkurunziza said that the future is “better”, grounding his hope on peace and security reported countrywide.

He reiterated his fight against corruption and fraud and promised to continue community works that boost the country’s economy and citizens’ cohesion.

Burundi has suffered turmoil since April last year when President Nkurunziza announced that he would seek a third term, which he later won in a presidential election on July 21, 2015 boycotted by the opposition.

Nkurunziza was sworn in on Aug. 20, 2015 for a third five-year term in office as the president of the east African nation.

Opponents say the president’s move violates the constitution, and mounted waves of protests.

Rights groups have reported several abusive arrests and torture in detention houses.

Over 500 people are said to have been killed in violence while some 270,000 people are said to have sought refuge in neighboring countries.

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