President Kenyatta has directed that the Kenyan flag and the East African Community flag be flown at half mast from dawn to dusk on Saturday in honor of Burundi President who died of a reported heart attack on Tuesday.
In a statement released to the public from State House, the president said that flags in all public places and at all of Kenya’s Diplomatic Missions abroad should fly at half-mast in memory of President Nkurunziza’s contributions to advancing integration and prosperity of the East African Community
According to the Burundi government spokesperson Mr Ntahorwamiye, the late Burundi President fell ill and was taken to hospital where his health deteriorated before he suffered a cardiac arrest and passed on.
President Kenyatta mourned his late counterpart, President Pierre Nkurunziza, who died at age 55 years after ruling Burundi for 15 years. The late Nkurunziza, a former rebel, was the first democratically elected president of Burundi.
The wife of the late President Nkurunziza, Denise Bucumi Nkurunziza had earlier been flown to Nairobi in Kenya for specialized treatment after being infected by COVID-19. She is still undergoing treatment with reports saying she has other underlying conditions that she is also being treated for.
Burundi had just held their general elections and the electoral committee had announced the ruling party candidate, Mr. Ndiyashimiye as the winner of the election. Ndiyashimiye was elected by a majority of voters after garnering 68% of votes while his closest rival garnered 24% of the total votes cast with a voter turnout of 88%.
The Burundi government also declared a period of national mourning for seven days from Tuesday with flags flying at half-mast. More details about the burial arrangements are yet to be communicated.