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Opposition Coalition Chairman Apprehended in Burundi

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The head of Burundi’s opposition party Aloys Baricako have been arrested by authorities, party members confirmed on Tuesday.

President of the party RANAC (National Gathering for Change) was picked up at a small central town called Gitega, returning from a funeral on Mondy evening. A spokesman for the party George Nikiza in a statement said ”The intelligence services in Gitega confirmed his arrest to us and said he was detained for inquiry”.

Since 2015, the poor central African country has been plagued by insecurity when President Pierre Nkurunziza amended the constitution in order to seek for a third term. His opponents have widely criticized the manoeuvre.

An armed struggle has been launched against Nkurunziza’s government by those condemning his third term which they considered to be ”unconstitutional” by any standard. The violence which has ensued has killed hundreds of Burundians and displaced nearly half a million to seek refuge in neighbouring countries. Among those who’ve left are opposition figures worried about their safety.

Aloys Baricako’s RANAC party formed a 3-party coalition during the elections of 2015 but later registered in December 2016 as a single party.

 

 

Neba Benson,

BaretaNews Foreign Correspondent/Analyst

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