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Former Burundi President imprisoned for murder

Former Burundian President Pierre Buyoya (centre) with his wife Sophie (left) at Rwanda's genocide memorial centre in 2014. File picture: Noor Khamis/Reuters

Pierre Buyoya, Burundi’s ex-president has been handed life sentence for murdering his opponent Melchior Ndadaye, four months after the former was beaten in 1993 polls.

Pierre was reported to be the mastermind of 1993 attacks which brought about civil war that killed more than 300,000 people. This was after Ndadaye Melchior defeated Pierre in the central African country’s elections that made him the first freely elected president.

Buyoya Pierre who is the current African Union’s High representative for Mali and Sehel, will now spend the rest of his life in prison after he, alongside 28 others were found guilty of murder following the death of Melchior.

The October 19 ruling was seen by Reuters on Tuesday October 18. Most of those charged alongside Buyoya did not appear before the court.

Ndadaye was shot dead together with more than 10 cabinet ministers in ambush by the Tutsi troops. His fetal death four months after he was elected as the President resulted into ethnic bloodshed between the Tutsi and Hutu communities that took away more than 500,000 lives.

Two former deputy presidents for Burundi; Busokoza Bernard and Alphonse Marie Kadege were also charged for murder. Both the deputy presidents had fled before facing the charges against humanity.

In addition, the court ordered a collective fine of 103billion Burundian Francs ($54million) to be paid by those who were sentenced.

Benard Lucas (Mc Ressy)
A media practitioner, event organizer, a writer and a poet. A world class motivational speaker.

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