(Xinhua) -- Burundian President Pierre
Nkurunziza on Sunday pardoned over 2,000 inmates and called on
citizens to be more patriotic.
"Over 2,000 inmates are
going to be released from various prisons in 2018. We urge them
to avoid committing again offences that may return them to
prison," said Nkurunziza in a new year message to the nation.
The presidential pardon comes in the context of consolidating
peace and cohesion in the central African nation, said the
president, adding that the pardon targets pregnant and
breastfeeding inmates and those whose jail term is less than
five years and.
Inmates with physical disabilities and those who have spent
half of their jail term will also be pardoned, he said.
Some 2,576 inmates had benefited from the presidential pardon
in 2017, according to him.
He also urged Burundian citizens to financially contribute to
the country’s 2020 elections and to massively participate in the
referendum of the national constitution to be held in May 2018.
Nkurunziza also said Burundi’s energy crisis has been solved
by the use of thermal energy of 30 megawatts, adding that the
construction of hydropower dams is underway to produce more
Plans for 2018 include consolidating peace and security,
fighting terrorism and continuing the repatriation of Burundian
citizens living in exile, he further said.
Thunder strike kills three
in central Burundi says police spokesman
BUJUMBURA Burundi (Xinhua) --
Three people were killed and 18 others
were injured in a thunder strike on Saturday in central Burundi,
police said on Sunday.
The thunder strike that occurred during torrential rains on
Saturday afternoon hit a social event at a village in Buraza
Commune in Gitega Province, Police Spokesman Pierre Nkurikiye
told Xinhua in a telephone interview.
He said that the three died on the spot while 18 others were
injured, many of them traumatized.