Jean Baptiste Bagaza
|2nd President of Burundi|
1 November 1976 –3 September 1987
|Prime Minister||Édouard Nzambimana (1976–78), then position abolished|
|Preceded by||Michel Micombero|
|Succeeded by||Pierre Buyoya|
|Born|| 29 August 1946 |
|Died||4 May 2016 69) (aged|
|Political party|| Union for National Progress (UPRONA)|
Party for National Recovery (PARENA)
|Conviction(s)||Conspiracy against former president Pierre Buyoya|
|Imprisoned at||Mpanga Prison (1997)|
Jean-Baptiste Bagaza (29 August 1946 –4 May 2016) was a Burundian army officer and politician who ruled Burundi as president and de facto military dictator from November 1976 to September 1987.
Born into the Tutsi ethnic group in 1946, Bagaza served in the Burundian military and rose through the ranks under the rule of Michel Micombero after his rise to power in 1966. Bagaza deposed Micombero in a bloodless coup d'état in 1976 and took power himself as head of the ruling Union for National Progress (Union pour le Progrès national, UPRONA). Despite having participated in the genocidal killings of 1972, he introduced various reforms which modernised the state and made concessions to the country's ethnic Hutu majority. His regime became increasingly repressive after the regime became consolidated in 1984, especially targeting the powerful Catholic Church. His rule lasted until 1987 when his regime was overthrown in a further coup d'état and he was forced into exile. He returned to Burundi in 1994 and became involved in national politics as the leader of the Party for National Recovery (Parti pour le Redressement National, PARENA). He died in 2016.
Bagaza was born in Rutovu, Bururi Province in Belgian-ruled Ruanda-Urundi on 29 August 1946. His family were ethnic Hima, part of the wider Tutsi ethnic group.After studying in Catholic schools in Bujumbura, he enlisted in the army of the newly independent Kingdom of Burundi. He was sent to Belgium in 1966 where he studied at the Royal Military Academy in Brussels until 1971. He earned a sociology degree. He returned to Burundi in 1972 and was appointed adjunct chief of staff of the Burundian military, largely because of his family's connections to the dictator Michel Micombero who also came from Rutovu. Bagaza was involved in Micombero's genocidal killings of ethnic Hutu in 1972, though the "extent or nature of his involvement" remain unclear.
Bagaza overthrew Micombero in a military coup on 1 November 1976.The constitution was temporarily suspended by a military junta, the 30-member Supreme Revolutionary Council, which declared Bagaza president on 10 November 1976. He was thirty at the time. Bagaza initiated a number of reforms after taking power, attacking corruption and making modest reforms to improve conditions for Hutus who had been targeted under the Micombero regime. He earned respect for his work ethic, as he "drove himself to work at 7:30 a.m. each day" instead of travelling in large cavalcades as most regional politicians did at the time. Some Hutu refugees were allowed to return from exile in Zaire and Tanzania where they had fled during the genocide. Bagaza granted a few government posts to Hutu, appointing two Hutu ministers in his first cabinet. Burundi's feudal system of land tenure, known as the Ubugererwa , was abolished in 1977. Some Tutsi-held land was transferred to Hutu farmers. However, Bagaza ensured that the Tutsi remained economically and politically dominant.
A programme of economic modernization was begun to allow the emergence of small-scale capitalist agriculture, involving the construction of two new hydroelectric dams which still form the basis for Burundi's energy infrastructure.He also initiated road building programs, expanded the availability of drinking water, and developed a port on Lake Tanganyika. His infrastructure investments helped to shape Burundi's export ecenomy which came to rely on coffee, tea and sugar. Internationally, Bagaza successfully maneuvered between different political factions, securing economic aid from the West, the Eastern bloc, China, and Arab states.
Bagaza's regime introduced a new national constitution in 1981 which consolidated Burundi as a one-party dictatorship under the Union for National Progress (Union pour le Progrès national, UPRONA), which he re-organised under his own leadership. In the election of 1984, he was re-elected president with 99.6 percent of the national vote.After the election, Bagaza organized a military operation against the Catholic Church in Burundi, regarding it as a threat to his power. The Church was increasingly targeted as the regime became increasingly repressive. Foreign missionaries were expelled and attempts were made to break its influence over the public and education. Bagaza banned Catholic media and church services, closed Church-run literacy centers, and ordered the arrest and torture of Church figures. He also tried to implement other "eccentricities" such as restricting bar openings and officially limiting the time as well as money Burundians were allowed to spent for traditional betrothal and mourning ceremonies. Bob Krueger argued that these policies ultimately alienated too many Burundians and led to Bagaza's deposition.
A military coup broke out in September 1987, led by Major Pierre Buyoya, while Bagaza was abroad in Quebec, Canada. Buyoya successfully deposed Bagaza's regime and established himself as president.Bagaza himself went into exile in neighbouring Uganda and later in Libya where he lived until 1993. Opposed to the empowerment of Hutu through the 1993 elections, he reportedly played a major part in the coup d'état against Melchior Ndadaye, Burundi's first democratically elected president. The putschists killed Ndadaye, but failed to maintain control. Power was consequently returned to a civilian, democratic government. Bagaza subsequently denied any involvement in the putsch. Despite the coup's failure, he returned to Burundi where he founded the Party for National Recovery (Parti pour le Redressement National, PARENA). PARENA was described as a Tutsi "extremist party". He was a senator for life as a former head of state. At the time, Bagaza was known for his extreme views, including general opposition to any power-sharing agreements with Hutu factions such as the Front for Democracy in Burundi (Front pour la Démocratie au Burundi, FRODEBU). He eventually began to advocate the division of Burundi into a "Tutsiland" and a "Hutuland".
On 18 January 1997, Bagaza was placed under house arrest for gathering weapons for a plot against President Buyoya.Two months later, the house arrest was changed into a prison sentence, though he was quickly released. Bagaza was subsequently involved in the peace talks which were supposed to end the Burundian Civil War. As he and PARENA as a whole tended to be opposed to the implementation of power-sharing deals with the Hutu rebels, the government placed Bagaza under house arrest and banned PARENA from November 2002 to May 2003. In 2005, there were rumours that radical followers of Bagaza were organising a rebel group known as "Justice and Liberity United Front". Tensions abated when PARENA accepted ministerial position in the newly formed coalition government. In 2010, Bagaza ran as PARENA's candidate for the 2010 presidential election, but withdrew when the Burundian opposition boycotted the elections. He stepped down as head of PARENA in March 2014, and was succeeded by Zénon Nimbona. Bagaza remained the main opposition leader in the Burundian Senate, and joined the opposition boycott of the 2015 elections. He died in Brussels, Belgium on 4 May 2016 at the age of 69 of natural causes and was buried in Bujumbura on 17 May 2016. He was survived by his wife Fausta and four daughters.
The BurundiNational Defence Force is the state military organisation responsible for the defence of Burundi.
Burundi originated in the 16th century as a small kingdom in the African Great Lakes region. After European contact, it was united with the Kingdom of Rwanda, becoming the colony of Ruanda-Urundi - first colonised by Germany and then by Belgium. The colony gained independence in 1962, and split once again into Rwanda and Burundi. It is one of the few countries in Africa to be a direct territorial continuation of a pre-colonial era African state.
Cyprien Ntaryamira was a Burundian politician who served as President of Burundi from 5 February 1994 until his death two months later. A Hutu born in Burundi, Ntaryamira studied there before fleeing to Rwanda to avoid ethnic violence and complete his education. Active in a Burundian student movement, he cofounded the socialist Burundi Workers' Party and earned an agricultural degree. In 1983 he returned to Burundi and worked agricultural jobs, though he was briefly detained as a political prisoner. In 1986 he cofounded the Front for Democracy in Burundi (FRODEBU), and in 1993 FRODEBU won Burundi's general elections. He subsequently became the Minister of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry on 10 July, but in October Tutsi soldiers killed the president and other top officials in an attempted coup.
Michel Micombero was a Burundian politician and army officer who ruled the country as its first president and dictator for the decade between 1966 and 1976.
Pierre Buyoya was a Burundian army officer and politician who served two terms as President of Burundi in 1987 to 1993 and 1996 to 2003 as de facto military dictator. He was the second-longest serving president in Burundian history.
The Burundian Civil War was a civil war in Burundi lasting from 1993 to 2005. The civil war was the result of longstanding ethnic divisions between the Hutu and the Tutsi ethnic groups. The conflict began following the first multi-party elections in the country since its independence from Belgium in 1962, and is seen as formally ending with the swearing-in of President Pierre Nkurunziza in August 2005. Children were widely used by both sides in the war. The estimated death toll stands at 300,000.
The Union for National Progress is a nationalist political party in Burundi. It initially emerged as a nationalist united front in opposition to Belgian colonial rule but subsequently became an integral part of the one-party state established by Michel Micombero after 1966. Dominated by members of the Tutsi ethnic group and increasingly intolerant to their Hutu counterparts, UPRONA remained the dominant force in Burundian politics until the latter stages of the Burundian Civil War in 2003. It is currently a minor opposition party.
Sylvie Kinigi is a Burundian politician and banker who served as Prime Minister of Burundi from 10 July 1993 to 7 February 1994, and acting president from 27 October 1993 to 5 February 1994, the first and to date only woman to hold these positions in Burundi.
Antoine Nduwayo was the Prime Minister of Burundi from February 22, 1995, until July 31, 1996. He is an ethnic Tutsi and a member of UPRONA. He was appointed prime minister by the Hutu president in an effort to stop some Tutsis from fighting with his government. He resigned shortly after the 1996 military coup.
The Senate is the upper chamber of Parliament in Burundi. It consists of between 39 and 56 members who serve 5-year terms. The current Senate was elected on 20 July 2020 and consists of 39 members.
The Party for National Recovery is a minor political party in Burundi. It was founded in May 1994 by the former president Jean-Baptiste Bagaza. Bagaza, an ethnic Tutsi, had established a military dictatorship in Burundi from 1976 until his deposition in 1987, after which he lived in exile. He was allowed to return to the country during its democratization under Pierre Buyoya after 1992.
Joseph Cimpaye was a Burundian politician and writer.
Burundi, officially the Republic of Burundi, is a landlocked country in the Great Rift Valley where the African Great Lakes region and East Africa converge. It is bordered by Rwanda to the north, Tanzania to the east and southeast, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west; Lake Tanganyika lies along its southwestern border. The capital cities are Gitega and Bujumbura, which is also the largest city.
Ethnic groups in Burundi include the three main indigenous groups of Hutu, Tutsi and Twa that have largely been emphasized in the study of the country's history due to their role in shaping it through conflict and consolidation. Burundi's ethnic make-up is similar to that of neighboring Rwanda. Additionally, recent immigration has also contributed to Burundi's ethnic diversity. Throughout the country's history, the relation between the ethnic groups has varied, largely depending on internal political, economic and social factors and also external factors such as colonialism. The pre-colonial era, despite having divisions between the three groups, saw greater ethnic cohesion and fluidity dependent on socioeconomic factors. During the colonial period under German and then Belgian rule, ethnic groups in Burundi experienced greater stratifications and solidification through biological arguments separating the groups and indirect colonial rule that increased group tensions. The post-independence Burundi has experienced recurring inter-ethnic violence especially in the political arena that has, in turn, spilled over to society at large leading to many casualties throughout the decades. The Arusha Agreement served to end the decades-long ethnic tensions, and the Burundian government has stated commitment to creating ethnic cohesion in the country since, yet recent waves of violence and controversies under the Pierre Nkurunziza leadership have worried some experts of potential resurfacing of ethnic violence. Given the changing nature of ethnicity and ethnic relations in the country, many scholars have approached the topic theoretically to come up with primordial, constructivist and mixed arguments or explanations on ethnicity in Burundi.
The 1996 Burundian coup d'état was a military coup d'état that took place in Burundi on 25 July 1996. In the midst of the Burundi Civil War, former president Pierre Buyoya deposed Hutu President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya. According to Amnesty International, in the weeks following the coup, more than 6,000 people were killed in the country. This was Buyoya's second successful coup, having overthrown Jean-Baptiste Bagaza in 1987.
The 1987 Burundian coup d'état was a bloodless military coup that took place in Burundi on 3 September 1987. Tutsi president Jean-Baptiste Bagaza was deposed whilst traveling abroad and succeeded by Tutsi Major Pierre Buyoya.
On 18–19 October 1965, a group of ethnic Hutu officers from the Burundian military and gendarmerie attempted to overthrow Burundi's government in a coup d'état. The rebels were frustrated with Burundi's monarch, Mwami Mwambutsa IV, who had repeatedly attempted to cement his control over the government and bypassed parliamentary norms despite Hutu electoral gains. Although the prime minister was shot and wounded, the coup failed due to the intervention of a contingent of troops led by Captain Michel Micombero. The attempted putsch provoked a backlash against Hutus in which thousands of people, including the participants in the coup, were killed. The coup also facilitated a militant Tutsi backlash against the monarchy resulting in two further coups which culminated in the abolition of the monarchy in November 1966 and the proclamation of a republic with Micombero as President of Burundi.
The 1976 Burundian coup d'état was a bloodless military coup that took place in Burundi on 1 November 1976. An Army faction, led by Deputy Chief of Staff Jean-Baptiste Bagaza, ousted President Michel Micombero. Bagaza formed the 30-member Supreme Revolutionary Council to take control, suspended the country's constitution and was inaugurated as president on 10 November 1976.
On 21 October 1993, a coup was attempted in Burundi by a Tutsi–dominated army faction. The coup attempt resulted in assassination of Hutu President Melchior Ndadaye and the deaths of other officials in the constitutional line of presidential succession. François Ngeze was presented as the new President of Burundi by the army, but the coup failed under domestic and international pressure, leaving Prime Minister Sylvie Kinigi in charge of the government.
Martin Ndayahoze was a Burundian military officer and government official who served variously as Minister of Information, Minister of Economy, and Deputy Chief of Staff of the Burundian National Army. He was the only Hutu military officer to serve in government under President Michel Micombero and frequently warned of the dangers of ethnic violence in his reports to the presidency. He was executed in 1972.