Burundi should swear-in president-elect Evariste Ndayishimiye as president as soon as possible (ASAP), tThe country’s Constitutional Court ruled yesterday June 12, 2020.
The cabinet, led by the First Vice President, on Thursday referred the issues regarding transition, to the court so that it may interpret the laws connected to it.
The death on Monday of Pierre Nkurunziza, who had been president in Burundi since 2005 and waiting to peacefully hand power to his successor and ally, Ndayishimiye, in August, left a leadership vacuum ,which had to be filled immediately.
In Burundi in case the president dies in power, the speaker of parliament is appointed president. Pascal Nyabenda, the speaker of Burundian parliament, should have been appointed president therefore. This will not happen, the constitutional court in Burundi has ruled.
Ndayishimiye, who ran on the ticket of the ruling party and endorsed by the late Pierre Nkurunziza, in presidential election held last month will now be sworn as soon as possible not in August as it would be if Nkurunziza hadn’t passed on.
The opposition in Burundi say the vote conducted in May was heavily rigged. Their petition was rejected by the constitutional court. The country is still in mourning the shock passing of their longest serving president.
Pierre Nkurunziza’s death which occurred on Monday June 8, 2020, has however sent shock waves across the region about the spread of COVID-19 with reports indicating that he had been diagnosed with the disease. His wife Denise, his mother in law as well as sister, have been receiving treatment at Aga Khan Hospital in Kenya due to COVID-19.
The official government statement is that Nkurunziza died of a heart attack.