Burkina Faso gets new PM, mutiny spreads

2011-04-19 09:05

kalahari.com

Ouagadougou - Burkina Faso's ambassador to France was named the African country's new prime minister Monday as police joined soldiers on a rampage and students staged violent protests against President Blaise Compaore's regime.

Soldiers and paramilitary police poured into the streets of the northern town of Kaya, firing shots into the air, torching the home of an army regiment chief and ransacking that of a regional officer, residents told AFP by telephone.

It was the first time police had taken part in the uprising that began in the capital Ouagadougou on Thursday. An official said they were demanding their wages and were to be paid on Monday.

Kaya was the fourth town to be affected in the landlocked state, one of the world's poorest countries, after Ouagadougou and the small centres of Po and Tenkodogo in the south.

The ambassador to France, Luc-Adolphe Tiao, was named prime minister late on Monday and will replace Tertius Zongo, who was dismissed on Friday.

Tiao, a 56-year-old journalist, former director of the state-owned daily newspaper Sidwaya and head of the Superior Communication Council, has never held a government post before.

Meanwhile, protesting youths in Koudougou in western Burkina Faso also turned to violence, burning down the premises of the ruling party and a home of ex-prime minister Zongo, witnesses said.

Truth and justice


The demonstration was initially a peaceful one by students and school pupils, residents said, but it degenerated. The home of the headmaster of the town's main school was also torched.

"We want to make the ruling power... look into our concerns" and establish "truth and justice for Justin Zongo and all victims of repression," the students said in a statement sent to AFP.

They were referring to a student who died in a February demonstration, killed by police, according to his relatives, while authorities said the boy was ill.

The latest wave of protests erupted on Thursday as mutineers ran riot in the capital, demanding better pay and housing and food benefits.

Soldiers again briefly fired off shots in a camp near Ouagadougou late on Monday.

They "have not received their pay for the month of March", said a source close to the general staff.

"They also want their bonuses to be aligned on those of the presidential guard," he said.

The payment of the March salaries began on Saturday in the capital and continued on Monday in all the garrisons around the country, a military source told AFP.

Hey demands


The housing and food benefits, one of the key demands, had also begun to be paid in all the camps, the source said.

A statement read on state television by Moussa Ag Abdoulaye, a spokesperson for the presidential guard, said late on Monday the guard's military members were loyal to Compaore.

He also called on other troops to end their protests.

"We ask our comrades in arms throughout the country to end their demonstrations because we realise how much damage they do to civilians we are supposed to protect and defend," he said surrounded by a dozen soldiers.

"We reaffirm our respect and loyalty to his Excellency Blaise Compaore, the president of Burkina Faso and top armed forces chief.

"Our demonstration was only meant to affirm our rights ... We appreciate the proposals made by the command. We regret the damage, looting and breach of the peace these past days," he added "apologising for the trouble caused."

He also said that several looters had been arrested and looted items including bags of rice seized.

45 admitted to hospital


Ouagadougou, which had been shut down since Thursday because of the unrest, was returning to normal on Monday, with banks and public offices opening.

But traders refused to open their stalls at the central market, though they were present. On Saturday they had violently protested against the soldiers who looted and burned their businesses during the rampage.

The violence in the capital had seen at least 45 people admitted to hospital with injuries while a number of rapes were also reported, a hospital official told AFP on Saturday.

Po and Tenkodogo were also calm on Monday after soldiers had opened fire in the streets and looted shops at the weekend, residents said.

Po, 145km from Ouagadougou and near the border with Ghana, is symbolic for Compaore, who once headed the military national centre of training and command (CNEC) there.

It was from the CNEC that as a captain Compaore and other commandos launched a military coup in 1983 against president Jean-Baptiste Ouedraogo and put their friend and comrade-in-arms, Captain Thomas Sankara, in power in 1983.

But Sankara was killed in 1987 when Compaore led a coup against him and became head of state, going on to win all presidential elections from 1991 to 2010.

Read more on:    blaise compaore  |  burkina faso  |  west africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Tuesday Parow - 06:34 AM
    Road name: N1 Inbound
    DELAYS between Plattekloof Road and the N7 Highway
  • Tuesday Cape Town - 06:33 AM
    Road name: N2 Inbound
    SLOW TRAFFIC between the R300 Highway and the Satellite Station
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Regional Sales Manager

Cape Town Northern Suburbs
Persona Staff

Electrician

Cape Town Southern Suburbs
Hire Resolve

Support Consultant

Cape Town Northern Suburbs
Evrst Business Solutions
R14 000 Per Month

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2 TV Series for R250

Get 2 TV Series box sets for R250 and save up to R148! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Nokia Lumia 800

The stunningly social Nokia Lumia 800 features head-turning design, ...

From R2775.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Something may come up to alert you of your security needs. It may be that you need to create a better structure for your finances...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.