The country´s former president Pierre Nkurunziza, died suddenly on June 9 of a cardiac arrest, after 15 years in power. He was due to step down in August.
Ndayishimiye, as the candidate of the ruling party, National Council for the Defense of Democracy – Forces for the Defense of Democracy (CNDD-FDD), secured just over 68 percent of the vote in the May 2020 election. He was originally scheduled to be sworn into office in August, but the Constitutional Court ruled last week that Ndayishimiye’s swearing had to take place as soon as possible following the death of his predecessor.
#Burundi S.E Gén. Maj. Evariste Ndayishimiye prononce le discours d’investiture et rend un vibrant hommage à son prédécesseur Feu S.E Pierre Nkurunziza. Une minute de silence a été observée en sa mémoire. Il félicite le peuple burundais pour sa sérénité en ces moments durs. pic.twitter.com/Bz3UBceovm
GeneralEvariste Ndayishimiye pronounce his inaugural address and pays a vibrant tribute to his predecessor Pierre Nkurunziza. He held a minute´s silence in his memory. He congratulated the Burundian people for their serenity in such difficult times"
The new head of state popularly called "Neva" after a combination of his name, was a former army general and Hutu rebel just like Pierre Nkurunziza.
During his speech, the president asked media and human rights activists to partner with the government to tackle national issues, otherwise "they will be working for others, not Burundians".
The CNDD-FDD started to rule Burundi in the aftermath of the 1993 civil war that is estimated to kill up to 300,000 people and has remained in power ever since despite clashes with the opposition and waves of violence that have forced several citizens to flee the country.
“I call all those refugees in camps, to come back and drop away this misfortunate appellation of being a refugee,” Ndayishimiye said.
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, more than 330,000 Burundians are living in neighboring countries, to escape violent confrontations that have taken place in recent years.
Back in May, during his victory speech, Evariste Ndayishimiye said that he will listen to all citizens and particularly he will allow all refugees to return to the country.