Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza has died of heart failure, the government said Tuesday in a post from its official Twitter account.
“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 following heart failure on June 8, 2020,” the post said.
President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday, June 9 sent a message of condolence and comfort to the People of the Republic of Burundi and the family of His Excellency President Pierre Nkurunziza.
In his message, President Kenyatta termed the outgoing Burundi leader as an outstanding regional counterpart who served his country with distinction as Head of State and Government, and worked tirelessly for the peace and stability of his country and the Great Lakes Region.
President Kenyatta said death had robbed East Africa of a prominent leader whose contribution to the integration and progress of the region shall be sorely missed, and prayed for God’s calming comfort as the family, the people of Burundi and indeed East Africans mourn their departed leader.
The 55 year old President was admitted to hospital on Saturday after feeling unwell, his condition improved but on Monday he had a cardiac arrest and efforts to revive him were unsuccessful, officials say.
Since last week, Mr Nkurunziza’s wife, Denise Nkurunziza, has been receiving medical treatment in Kenya.
She was rumored to have tested positive for coronavirus – a disease Mr Nkurunziza had appeared to downplay, holding an election in the midst of the outbreak, and even expelling World Health Organization representatives from the country.