Fidelity bank banner UBA banner
Loyal forces crush Burundi coup; embattled President back home

By News Express on 15/05/2015

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+

Views: 2,201


President Pierre Nkurunziza returned to Burundi on Thursday, his office said, after the army chief declared that an attempted coup staged when the east African leader was abroad had failed.

But bursts of gunfire in the capital and fighting for control of the state radio during the day indicated there was still determined opposition to the president, who sparked protests and the coup attempt by his move to seek a third term.

Critics said his re-election bid violated the constitution and a peace deal that ended an ethnically fuelled civil war that ended in 2005, plunging the nation into a deep political crisis.

But before announcing his return, loyalists of the president said they were in control of the major strategic assets, such as the airport and presidential offices. They also said they still controlled the state broadcaster despite the heavy fighting.

“President Nkurunziza is back in Burundi after the attempted coup. He congratulates the army, the police and the Burundian people,” said a brief phone text message from the presidency.

A presidential official confirmed the statement, but would not say where Nkurunziza was in Burundi or how he had returned.

Nkurunziza was in Tanzania at a summit of African leaders on Wednesday when Major General Godefroid Niyombare, who the president sacked as intelligence chief in February, declared he was dismissing the president and his government.

A day later, Army Chief of Staff General Prime Niyongabo said the coup had failed. “Loyal forces are still controlling all strategic points,” he said in a state radio broadcast.

The announcement of Nkurunziza’s return suggested the government was now back in effective control, although periods of relative calm in Bujumbura on Thursday were broken by bouts of gunfire. By evening, the city had a semblance of calm.

A Reuters witness saw one dead soldier lying near the Interior Ministry. Nearby troops said he was a coup supporter.

In an earlier broadcast, Nkurunziza offered amnesty to rebel troops. “I thank soldiers who are putting things in order, and I forgive any soldier who decides to surrender,” he said.

But he is coming home to a nation where thousands of people in the capital spent more than two weeks protesting against his third-term election bid, often waging fierce street battles with police, and then cheered when his ouster was announced.

Nkurunziza justifies his bid for another five years in office by pointing to a constitutional court ruling which said the president could run because his first term, when he was picked by parliament rather than by popular vote, did not count. Critics say the court is biased.

The United Nations says more than 70,000 Burundians have already crossed the borders for fear of an upsurge in violence, unsettling a region with a history of ethnic fighting.

African nations condemned the takeover attempt.

“East African leaders are determined to find a lasting solution to Burundi’s crisis,” Tanzanian Foreign Minister Bernard Membe said in Dar es Salaam. “Africa does not want the leadership of any country to be assumed by the barrel of a gun.”

The African Union criticised any attempt to seize “power through violence” and called for dialogue to resolve the crisis.

The 15-nation U.N. Security Council said it would “respond to violent acts in Burundi that threaten peace and security” and condemned “those who facilitate violence of any kind against civilians and those who seek to seize power by unlawful means.”

Western donors, which provide vital aid to finance Burundi's budget and other institutions, have urged Nkurunziza not to run again and have criticised the police crackdown on protesters.

After Wednesday’s coup attempt, the United States, which helps train and equip the army, told all sides to end violence.

The European Union, Belgium and the Netherlands have all suspended some aid due to the unrest, particularly donations linked to the elections, which include parliamentary polls scheduled for May 26 and the presidential vote on June 26.

•Excerpted from a Reuters report. Photo shows embattled President Nkurunziza of Burundi.

Source News Express

Posted 15/05/2015 3:06:45 PM

 

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+


 

CLASSIFIED ADS

 

You may also like...
Finance Minister raises hope on economic recovery, highlights...

Hilton Worldwide announces first hotel in the Democratic...

Homosexuality “poisoning” Nigerian society — Primate

Lagos CP redeploys officers following threat by robbers...

GO HUG TRANSFORMER IF YOU LIKE: Mugabe tells...

Girl, 17, cuts off boyfriend’s manhood in Jigawa...

Fuel scarcity will end by weekend — NNPC...

Convention: PDP rakes in N113m from sale of...

Intersociety, CLO, 13 other rights groups drag Enugu...

Nigeria ranks 16th in global cybercrimes

Rivers Police Commissioner opens up on escape of...

Jealous ex-UN worker strips and forces girlfriend to...

 

Latest News 2019: Bode George, other South-West leaders warn South-East leaders •Urge support for Atiku/Peter Obi ticket N2.97 billion not accounted for in 2016 audit: Report EFCC detains Fayose over N4.6b slush funds Red Cross begs Boko Haram to free Leah Sharibu, Alice Loksha Fayemi appoints COS, SSG, CPS VP Slot: Obi competent; South East Governors not against him — Gov. Umahi Boko Haram: Senate summons security chiefs Landslide destroys 40 buildings, historical sites in Cross River Court bars INEC, APC from disqualifying Zamfara candidates Hauwa’s execution by Boko Haram barbaric, totally unacceptable, says Adegboruwa We stand on Atiku/Obi ticket — South East former lawmakers NERC moves against abuse of estimated electricity bills

 

Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (406,876 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (382,406 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (314,783 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (257,001 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (237,425 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (224,298 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (204,093 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (185,569 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (170,140 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (165,875 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (161,493 views) Gunmen kill ASP, 2 other police officers in vain bid to kidnap Rivers PDP chieftain (149,289 views)

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (67) Business & Economy (3,683) Business Verdict (52) Columnists (946) Complaints & Requests (94) Enterprise & Opportunities (207) Entertainment (559) Features (659) Global Business Monitor (304) International (2,536) Interview (165) Live Commentary (28) Love Matters (145) News (39,677) Opinion (1,124) Pidgin (13) Politics (7,254) Religion (880) Sports (1,731) Stock Watch (35) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

Zenith Zero Balance

NLNG Expression of Interest banner

CBN banner

Firstmobile banner

 

 

NEWS EXPRESS TV

LIBYA vs NIGERIA 2-3 Goals Highlights

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera

Advertisement