1 dead, dozens injured in Bujumbura explosions, Nkurunziza says country is peaceful


BURUNDI'S FORMER LEADERS: From left, Pierre Buyoya, Sylivestre Ntibantunganya, Domitien Ndayizeye and Jean Baptist Bagaza

BURUNDI’S FORMER LEADERS: From left, Pierre Buyoya, Sylivestre Ntibantunganya, Domitien Ndayizeye and Jean Baptist Bagaza attending talks in Entebbe, Uganda last week.

One person was killed and seral others injured in grenade and gun attacks reported in several neighborhoods of the capital Bujumbura on New Year’s Eve.

Speaking to National Radio, police spokesman, Pierre Nkurikiye, acknowledged ten people were injured following a grenade explosion in a pub located in Buyenzi, as another grenade explosion injured two security guards in the northern Mutakura area.

Still in the north of the capital, another grenade exploded in a household, injuring the attacker and neighbour of the invaded family. In the neighboring Buterere, suspected bandits shot and injured a child.

In the central commune of Mukaza, a policeman was injured following a grenade attack at a police checkpoint in Nyakabiga, and another one exploded in the neighboring Rohero, claiming no victims, except a house and a car packed inside that were damaged.

Despite these separate attacks here and there almost every day in the capital Bujumbura, Burundi President insists the security situation across the country is peaceful. In his address to the nation on New Year’s Eve, he lauded security forces and the population who worked together to safeguard security during the year 2015.

“Because of efforts by the security forces, the population, judiciary and administration, many of those who attempted to disturb the country were apprehended and brought to justice, as others were killed and many weapons were seized from the wrong hands,” said President Nkurunziza.

He acknowledged around six thousand suspected criminals were arrested as around 120 armed groups who tried to invade Burundi were dismantled.

President Nkurunziza called upon the youths to avoid manipulation by ill-willed politicians for their interests of spoiling their future.

“We’d like to strongly appeal to the youths, educated and uneducated, to avoid being indoctrinated by some wrong politicians who undermine their future. They should listen to advice given by their parents and elders,” President Nkurunziza advised the youths.

He called on parents and religious leaders, especially in the capital Bujumbura and the neighbouring regions of Mirwa, Mugamba to closely keep an eye on their children.

President Nkurunziza did not explain why he singled out the two regions, but unconfirmed reports indicate the pair could be hosting rebel elements carrying or preparing attacks against government forces.

Earlier last week, the Ugandan leader opened talks between warrying parties in Burundi but there were sharp disagreements on issues with each not willing to budge.

More than 400 have died in the Burundian conflict and over 220,000 have fled to regional countries.