President Yoweri Museveni has promised to work closely with Burundi’s new leader Maj Gen Evariste Ndayishimye, who was sworn into office Thursday.
In a congratulatory message, Museveni thanked the people of Burundi for being peaceful in the aftermath of the elections that brought Ndayishimye to power.
“Congratulations to His Excellency Maj. Gen. (Rtd) Evariste Ndayishimye, who was sworn-in today as President of Burundi, following the massive victory of the CNDD-FDD party in elections held on May 20th, 2020,” Museveni said in a statement.
“The resounding victory was a clear manifestation of the level of trust and confidence the people of Burundi have in the new President and his party. I also thank the people of Burundi for being peaceful during and after the election. On my own behalf and that of Ugandans, I wish you a successful tenure in office as well as the continued peace, progress and prosperity of Burundi. We also look to working closely with you to strengthen bilateral ties of our two countries,” he added.
Ndayishimye emerged winner and was due for inauguration in August, however, the death of President Pierre Nkurunziza brought the need for a hastened inauguration due to fear if power struggles.
Ndayishimiye is a former rebel leader, like Nkurunziza.
He was backed by his predecessor and was declared the winner of May’s presidential election, which the opposition said was rigged.
Nkurunziza died aged 55 on 8 June after suffering a cardiac arrest, the government said. There are unconfirmed reports that he was suffering from Covid-19.
After 15 years in power, Nkurunziza was due to step down in August.
According to Burundi’s constitution, if the head of state dies in office then the president of the national assembly, currently Pascal Nyabenda, should succeed him.
But after a ruling by Burundi’s Constitutional Court, Ndayishimiye’s inauguration in the capital, Gitega, was brought forward.