Suscipicious behaviour is being reported in Kenya following the reported overthrow of the Burundi President, Pierre Nkurunziza.
Reports allege that the Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta could be planning to “sneak in Nkurunziza” who is currently hiding in an undisclosed location in Tanzania.
In the capital Nairobi, for unknown reasons, Harambee Avenue has been closed.
Former Kenya Prime Minister, Raila Odinga, says the latest developments in Burundi, in which the military announced the “dismissal” of the President, are unfortunate and regrettable although they have not come as a surprise, given the events of recent months.
With this move, Raila argued, Burundi has lost an historic opportunity to strengthen its democracy by establishing a tradition of peaceful transfer of power.
He accused the East Africa Community and the African Union for failure to demonstrate that they are in tune with the changing times on the Continent, in which the people are not willing to be taken back to the old order in which constitutions counted for nothing.
“However, acquisition of power by means other than democratic elections should no longer have any place in Africa.”
Military intervention, according to Raila, even if caused by a leadership adamant on overthrowing the constitution, will not solve the problems of Burundi and may only worsen the situation.
“Given Burundi’s history of ethnic divisions, it is likely that the military intervention will widen the sectarian divide.”
He added: “I expect the East Africa Community leaders meeting in Tanzania to come up with a clear road map for Burundi’s return to the path of constitutionalism and democratic elections, including a categorical statement that President Pierre Nkurunziza is not eligible to run.”
Raila called on the international community to support the right of the people of Burundi to peaceful pursuit of their democratic rights and freedoms saying authorities in Burundi and the region must ensure respect for the right of all peaceful political parties and their candidates to campaign, hold meetings and rallies, and express their views.
“They must also ensure respect of the right of the media to report freely on the electoral process and campaigns.”
“We must enforce an acceptance and respect of carrying out peaceful and credible elections in Burundi within the shortest time possible. The leaders of the region and the continent must recognize that times have changed,” Raila who had earlier on warned EAC on Burundi instability, once more advised.
Burundi Coup spokesman, Venon Ndabaneze, says forces loyal to Maj Gen Godefroid Niyombare, are still in charge of the airport and key other areas.
The Army Chief of Staff announced through the national broadcaster that the attempted coup had failed.
The Private Radio station used by Maj Gen Niyombare to announce the coup was closed down last night after being targeted by troops loyal to President Nkurunziza.
The two factions are fighting for the control of the National Broadcaster which is under the control of troops loyal to President Nkurunziza led by Army Chief of Staff, heavy gunfire heard near the National broadcaster.
The streets of Bujumbura are deserted.
Using his social media Twitter handle, Nkurunziza said he was still in charge of the country.
“I ask all Burundians to keep the calm face of deception. The situation is under control and the constitutional order saved.”