KAMPALA – Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has joined several African leaders to pay tribute to the fallen president of the republic of Burundi, H.E Pierre Nkurunziza.
Nkurunziza, 55, died on Monday of a heart attack, according to an official statement from the government of Burundi.
His death came as a shock and surprise to many – after being seen in public on Saturday, seemingly healthy, watching a game of volleyball in the countryside.
“The Government of the Republic of Burundi announces with great sadness the unexpected death of His Excellency Pierre Nkurunziza, President of the Republic of Burundi, at the Karusi Fiftieth Anniversary Hospital following a cardiac arrest on June 8, 2020,” read a tweet posted by the government of Burundi on Tuesday, June 9.
URGENT: Le Gouvernement de la République du Burundi annonce avec une très grande tristesse le décès inopiné de Son Excellence Pierre Nkurunziza, Président de la République du Burundi, survenu à l’Hôpital du Cinquantenaire de Karusi suite à un arrêt cardiaque ce 8 juin 2020. pic.twitter.com/PP46kKzAM5
— Burundi Government (@BurundiGov) June 9, 2020
On his official twitter account, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni wrote: “My condolences to the people of Burundi, on the demise of H.E President Pierre Nkurunziza who died earlier in the week. May his soul rest in peace,” Museveni tweeted.
Similar comments were expressed in Nigeria, where President Muhammadu Buhari spoke of his “profound grief and sadness”.
“It is with profound grief and sadness that we received the news of the death of President Pierre Nkurunziza,” President Buhari tweeted, adding that, the fallen Burundian President was a true patriot that steered the country through turbulent times with wisdom and foresight.
It is with profound grief and sadness that we received the news of the death of President Pierre Nkurunziza. President Nkurunziza was a true patriot that steered the country through turbulent times with wisdom and foresight.
— Muhammadu Buhari (@MBuhari) June 9, 2020
Nkurunziza, the self-appointed “Supreme Eternal Guide” was due to step down in August after 15 years in power. His path to leadership had been a rocky one.
Flags flew at half-mast on Tuesday as the government declared seven days of national mourning.