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Burundi considers removing presidential term limits

Burundi considers removing presidential term limits


Burundi is weighing possibility to scrap presidential term limits from its constitution after a commission set up to hear public views on governance said most citizens wanted no curbs on the number of times the head of state may seek re-election.

The central African nation has been gripped by violence for more than a year, triggered by President Pierre Nkurunziza’s decision to seek a third term.

Opponents said the decision, taken in April 2015, violated the country’s constitution which currently limits presidential tenure to two five-year terms.

The majority of the people the commission met “want the president …to exercise more than two terms,” he told a news conference. “People said they have to erase the term limits; it means that the president can run for any time he wants.”

The commission is expected to send its report to Nkurunziza, who will then send to it parliament for debate and possibly begin a process to amend the constitution.

Critics also said Nkurunziza’s third term bid violated the terms of a 2005 peace deal that ended a previous rebellion.

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