Burundi celebrates President Ntaryamira Day every 6 April to remember the Democratic reforms and tragic death of former Burundian president Cyprien Ntaryamira.
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Ntaryamira helped found Front For Democracy, a political party that fought for and achieved the holding of a truly democratic election in Burundi in 1993. However, when Hutus won the election and thus threatened the power of the ruling Tutsis, the victor (President Ndadye) was assassinated after only three months in office.
At that point, Ntaryamira (also Hutu) became president. At first, things seemed to go well enough as Ntaryamira was thought of as a “moderate reformer”. But on 6 April 1994, the plane he was flying in was shot down, killing him and also the Rwandan president who was on board.
A horrible genocide followed the death of the two Hutu presidents. Revenge and hatred boiled over and became uncontrollable.
On 6 April, the people of Burundi remember one of their most beloved past presidents and his tragic death. They also ponder the events of the genocide and how to prevent such atrocities in the future.