Roadside ambush in Burundi claims 12 lives – Officials

Roadside ambush in Burundi claims 12 lives – Officials
Charles Nwoke, Bujumbura, Burundi
May 12, 2021

Above image. “Family reunification, Burundi” by ICRC is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Chaos in the Burundi is sometimes mediated by services like the ICRC. Terrorism on the rise in Africa. 

No fewer than 12 persons, including a senior military officer, were killed and several others injured in a roadside attack in central Burundi, administrative and medical sources said.

Burundian Police said, eight people were killed when hoodlums set upon four vehicles near Muramvya, a provincial capital about 50 kilometers (31 miles) northeast of the main city of Bujumbura early Monday.

According to AFP, residents and official government and hospital sources said that the real casualty toll was higher and that a child was among the dead victims.

“Ten people were killed on the spot and two others, including a little girl, succumbed to their injuries,” an administrative source who pleaded anonymity, told AFP.

A medical practitioner, who also pleaded anonymity said, “there were 11 bodies in the Muramvya morgue” while a twelfth victim was in Bujumbura after being relocated to a hospital over there.

Burundian President, Evariste Ndayishimiye while reacting to the ugly development said, those responsible must be brought to justice. “We are saddened to see Burundi once again lose its children to bandits,” he stated on Twitter.

A Colonel in the Burundian Army, Onesphore Nizigiyimana, and one of his daughters were among the victims, according to the administrative source, and family members of the victim.

The Colonel was said to be returning from a family celebration with his wife and three daughters when a dozen heavily-armed men ambushed their vehicle, setting it on fire.

“The colonel and one of his daughters were burned to death in their car,” a source said.

Three other vehicles that came across the scene, including a bus, were equally razed down by fire ignited upon them by the assailants using guns and grenades.

“People are in shock because it was a real military operation,” one Muramvya resident told AFP, saying the group disappeared into a nearby forest after collecting whatever they deem necessary.

In April, seven people were killed in Rusaka, a town in the neighboring province of Mwaro, in an attack on a bar which police also attributed to armed bandits.

In late 2020, about one dozen people were killed in similar armed attacks in Burundi, a small, landlocked nation with some 11 million population.