TOP
Saturday,July 04,2020 10:32 AM

Burundi's Nkurunziza to relinquish power

By AFP

Added 28th January 2020 06:15 AM

Constitutional changes would have allowed him to stay in office until 2034, but he said in 2018 that he would not stand for re-election again.

Burundi's Nkurunziza to relinquish power

Constitutional changes would have allowed him to stay in office until 2034, but he said in 2018 that he would not stand for re-election again.

Burundi's incumbent president Pierre Nkurunziza takes part in the ruling party CNDD-FDD's congress to nominate it's presidential candidate for the upcoming presidential elections in 2020, on January 26, 2020 at Gitega, central Burundi. AFP

Burundi's ruling party said Sunday that party leader General Evariste Ndayishimiye will stand as its candidate in a presidential election in May.

Ndayishimiye is an ally of current President Pierre Nkurunziza who will not seek a new mandate after his controversial election to a third term in 2015 plunged the country into crisis.

"Gen Evariste Ndayishimiye chosen to represent the CNDD-FDD at the 2020 presidential election," the party tweeted during an extraordinary congress at which Nkurunziza was present.

Nkurunziza's tenure has been marked by allegations of grave rights abuses and a crackdown on political freedoms.

Constitutional changes would have allowed him to stay in office until 2034, but he said in 2018 that he would not stand for re-election again.

Ahead of Sunday's congress, Nkurunziza had announced "the beginning of a new page in the history of Burundi and the CNDD-FDD party".

 General Evariste Ndayishimiye (R) sits next to his wife, Angeline, on January 26, 2020 at Gitega, central Burundi, during the ruling party CNDD-FDD's congress to nominate it's presidential candidate for the upcoming presidential elections in 2020.AFP PHOTO

The violent aftermath of the last presidential election in 2015 made Burundi a focus of an investigation by the International Criminal Court for alleged murders, rapes, tortures and disappearances.

Civil unrest left 1,200 people dead and drove 400,000 from their homes.

Ndayishimiye, 52, is already a key member of Burundi's ruling elite.

He has served as interior and security minister and chief of the president's military and civilian cabinet.

He was a key signatory of the 2003 ceasefire that ended Burundi's civil war.

According to a newly-adopted law, Nkurunziza meanwhile is to stay in a newly-built luxury villa after he steps down, receive a one-off payment of close to $550,000 and a salary for the rest of his life.

It is unclear whether he will stay out of politics, but experts say he is likely to remain influential.

Related articles

More From The Author

More From The Author