BUJUMBURA, Burundi — Burundian President Pierre Nkurunziza sacked three top minsters Monday after a failed coup attempt, replacing the defence, foreign affairs and trade ministers, a presidential spokesman said.
Emmanuel Ntahonvukiye, a civilian, was named to replace sacked defence minister Pontian Gaciyubwenge, while Alain Aime Nyamitwe was appointed foreign minster to succeed Laurent Kavakure, the spokesman said.
“The president has powers under the constitution, including being able to change the government…he believes that the time has come and it is up to his discretion,” spokesman Gervais Abayeho said.
Nyamitwe is a former ambassador to the African Union, while Ntahonvukiye, a lawyer who headed the country’s anti-corruption court, becomes the first civilian defence chief in 50 years.
Trade Minister Virginia Ciza has been replaced by Irina Inantore, he added.
A group of top generals last week launched a bid to oust Nkurunziza while he was on a visit to neighboring Tanzania after almost three weeks of protests over his controversial bid to stand again for office.