Court validates President Nkurunziza’s 3rd term bid, protesters vow to carry on marching

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Leonidas Hatungimana, President Pierre Nkurunziza’s ex-Spokesman. He is not surprised by the court’s decision.

 

Despite the fact that the Burundian Constitutional Court has validated the candidacy of President Pierre Nkurunziza for the controversial 3rd term in next month’s presidential poll, protestors have in the streets say they won’t back down until he withdraws his candidacy.

Pacifique Nininahazwe, one of the key organisers of the protests Bujumbura, says the court’s decision was no surprise he third term.

“The ruling is none of our business. We all know the Burundian Judiciary is not independent, and more than that, members of the constitutional court can never oppose the president who appointed them by decree,” Mr Nininahazwe said in an interview with this website.

Nininahaze’s views are echoed by Leonidas Hatungimana, President Nkurunziza’s former spokesman who was sacked after he advised his boss not to run for the third term.

Hatungimana says the constitutional court follows other state organs which frequently flout the law in Burundi for the politicians’ selfish gains.

“There is no surprise that the constitutional court has ruled as such. It has just joined the string of other organs that impinge on the law in Burundi,” he observed

The former spokesman of President Nkurunziza says the court has betrayed the country’s legal and democratic makeup by violating the constitution and the Arusha Peace Agreement.

He calls upon all Burundian people to stand still for the country’s democratic values.

The Bujumbura-based court following a referral to the court made by 14 members of the Senate from the ruling CNDD-FDD on the constitutional validity of the president’s candidacy, the Constitutional court has officially backed Nkurunziza in his bid to contest June’s presidential poll.

Not all the court’s members supported the validation, the deputy chairman of the court, Sylvère Nimpagaritse has fled to neighbouring Rwanda fearing for his life as he refused to endorse the president’s bid.

“Since I refused to violate the constitution and the Arusha Peace Accord by unlawfully endorsing the candidacy of Pierre Nkurunziza, I became the subject of death threats. That’s why I decided to flee,” Mr Nimpagaritse told Radio France International (RFI).

Meanwhile, protests against the controversial candidacy of Pierre Nkurunziza continued in and outside the capital Bujumbura Tuesday.

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Burundian Protestors

The government is calling for an end of the protests movement to give room for dialogue, organizers insist that the only way to call back the demonstration is for President Pierre Nkurunziza to withdraw his candidacy.

“The term limit is well provisioned by the Constitution and the Arusha Peace Agreement; there is no dialogue over it,” Dr. Jean Minani, one of the masterminds of the demonstrations told Afrika Reporter