Rights groups warmly welcome Former Burundi President

Former Burundi President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya returns home from exile

Former Burundi President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya returns home from exile

Sylvestre Ntibantunganya, the former Burundi President, returned home from his exile in Belgium on 11 December.
The civil society platforms PISC Burundi and CAPES+ have reserved to him a warm welcome. “This demonstrates political maturity and high civic responsibility”, says the rights groups that urged other Burundians in exile to follow his example and come back home to prepare the 2020 elections.

They also say that Burundian compatriots should look at the misfortunes suffered by some Burundians in exile in western countries and stop listening to those who tell them the West is a paradise.

They say that “forgiveness would remain their only salvation now that is the right moment for them to come back home following the call made by our leaders”.

In a statement issued on 13 December, the National Media Council (CNC) has also welcomed the former President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya. Gabriel Bihumugani, the CNC Deputy Chairman, called on him to cooperate with the council to restore a beautiful image to the media working on the national territory. “We exhort him to contribute by defending the universal human values, especially peace, tolerance, social progress and national cohesion while respecting the dignity of every human being”, said the CNC Deputy Chairman.

Former President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya fled the country in May 2016. On his return, he said he would speak soon in a press conference.

To date, about 300,000 people have fled the country since President Nkurunziza announced his third term bid, in April 2015.