The Burundian National Assembly approved on Tuesday the appointment by President Évariste Ndayishimiye of Alain-Guillaume Bunyoni, one of the hardliners of the regime, as Prime Minister, in the absence of the deputies of the main opposition party who boycotted the meeting.
“The general police commissioner Alain-Guillaume Bunyoni was approved by 92 votes for and 2 against on the 94 voting deputies”, announced the president of the National assembly, Pascal Nyabenda, at the end of the vote.
The post of Prime Minister is new. It was created thanks to the new Constitution adopted in 2018. The Burundian president was previously supported by two vice-presidents, one in charge of political and military affairs, the other of economic and social affairs.
The highest ranking Burundian police, police commissioner general Bunyoni was already considered the real number two of the regime since the political crisis of 2015 and the leader of the hardliners among the group of generals who control Burundian power.
Elected in May, President Ndayishimiye was invested Thursday, two months earlier than expected, after the death of his predecessor Pierre Nkurunziza, who died suddenly on June 8, at the age of 55 after 15 years in power, officially of cardiac arrest” .
The government announced Tuesday that Nkurunziza would be buried on Friday in Gitega, the country’s administrative capital.
Mr. Bunyoni’s appointment is “a very bad signal” and means “a greater grip of the generals on power, a strengthening of impunity for crimes and a challenge to the international community”, estimated one of the figures from civil society in exile, Pacifique Nininahazwe.
Mr. Bunyoni, who was previously Minister of Public Safety, has been the subject of “United States sanctions since 2015 for his role in the bloody repression going on in the country,” he said in a statement. interview with AFP.
Mr. Nkurunziza’s controversial candidacy for a third term in April 2015 had led to a political crisis that left more than 1,200 dead and 400,000 Burundians in exile.