Ntare V of Burundi

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Ntare V
Ntare V of Burundi.jpg
King Ntare V in 1966
King of Burundi
Reign8 July 1966 – 28 November 1966
Coronation3 September 1966
PredecessorMwambutsa IV
SuccessorMonarchy abolished
Prime MinisterMichel Micombero
BornPrince Charles Ndizeye of Burundi
(1947-12-02)2 December 1947
Gitega, Ruanda-Urundi
Died29 April 1972(1972-04-29) (aged 24)
Gitega, Burundi
FatherMwambutsa IV Bangiricenge
MotherBaramparaye Ruhasha

Ntare V of Burundi (born Charles Ndizeye, 2 December 1947 – 29 April 1972) was the last king of Burundi (or Mwami) from July to November 1966. Until his accession, he was known as Crown Prince Charles Ndizeye. After a Hutu-led coup attempt in October 1965, his father, Mwambutsa IV went into exile in Switzerland. In March 1966 Mwambusta IV designated his only surviving son as heir to the throne.[1] The Crown Prince then formally deposed his father and his father's government in July 1966. King Ntare himself was deposed, later the same year, in a military coup led by Michel Micombero; the former king went into exile in West Germany and later Uganda.

Early life[edit]

His mother was Queen Baramparaye (1929—2007); he had one half-brother (Prince Louis Rwagasore, assassinated 1961 whilst Prime Minister, and two half-sisters; Princess Rosa Paula Iribagiza (born 1934) and Princess Regina Kanyange (died 1987). Ntare V was educated at Institut Le Rosey in Switzerland.[citation needed]


Modern-day view of the ceremonially planted tree (ikigabiro) from the coronation of Ntare V

Ntare V returned to Burundi in March 1972. Soon afterwards the Hutus began an uprising against the government and established the short-lived state of Martyazo. Uganda’s president, Idi Amin, claimed he received a written guarantee from President Micombero that Ntare could return to Burundi and live there as a private citizen. Using the helicopter at his disposal from the Uganda chief of state, Ntare arrived where he and his ancestors had ruled as kings. Within a few hours he was put under house arrest in the former palace in Gitega. Soon after, an official radio broadcast proclaimed that Ntare was trying to instigate a mercenary invasion of Burundi to take back rule. Some ministers favored keeping him under restricted protection in Gitega, while others wanted him dead. The situation was unofficially resolved when Ntare was assassinated sometime between Saturday evening, April 29, and the following morning, under circumstances which remain unclear.

Whether there was a conspiracy or his death involved with a violent spontaneous outbreak in Gitega has not been determined.[2] Radio Nationale du Burundi (RNB Broadcasting) announced that the king was shot while attempting to escape from the palace where he had been "under arrest". The king's supporters claim he was taken from the Royal Palace and executed by a firing squad before being thrown into a common grave. Mwami N’tare V was 24 years old. Meanwhile, the Hutu uprising was quelled by Micombero's forces. Between 80,000 and 210,000 people died in the ensuing war and genocide.[3][4]


National orders[edit]

  • ARG Order of May - Knight BAR.png Grand Master of the Royal Order of Prince Louis Rwagasore.[citation needed]
  • Royal Order of Ruzinko.gif Grand Master of the Royal Order of Ruzinko (Royal Male Drum).[citation needed]
  • Royal Order of Karyenda.gif Grand Master of the Royal Order of Karyenda (Royal Female Drum).[citation needed]
  • Order of the Sun (Afghanistan) - ribbon bar.gif Grand Master of the Military Order of Karyenda (Royal Female Drum).[citation needed]


External links[edit]


  1. ^ Michael Crowder (1984). The Cambridge History of Africa. Cambridge University Press. pp. 737–. ISBN 978-0-521-22409-3.
  2. ^ Melady, Thomas (1974). Burundi: The Tragic years. New York: Orbis Books. pp. 5–6. ISBN 0-88344-045-8.
  3. ^ White, Matthew. Death Tolls for the Major Wars and Atrocities of the Twentieth Century: C. Burundi (1972-73, primarily Hutu killed by Tutsi) 120,000
  4. ^ International Commission of Inquiry for Burundi (2002). Paragraph 85. "The Micombero regime responded with a genocidal repression that is estimated to have caused over a hundred thousand victims and forced several hundred thousand Hutus into exile"
Ntare V of Burundi
House of Ntwero
Born: 2 December 1947 Died: 29 April 1972
Preceded by
Mwambutsa IV
King of Burundi
8 July 1966 – 28 November 1966
Preceded by
Mwambutsa IV
Head of State of Burundi
Succeeded by
Michel Micombero
(as President)