Six of 10 Burundians (62%) support limiting presidential terms to two – a remarkable evolution of public opinion between 2012 and 2014.
In 2012, only 51% of Burundian citizens supported presidential term limits. The larger new majority may indicate that as the country approaches elections, and in response to public debate on the issue, the number of people opposed to a third presidential term is increasing.
Public debate on the issue has raised significant controversy. The political opposition and civil society are firmly opposed to a third presidential term, whereas the ruling party says the government and appropriate authorities should decide the question. In March 2014, the government submitted to the National Assembly a proposed constitutional amendment designed to enable the current president of the Republic, Pierre Nkurunziza, to seek a third term. The amendment was rejected by a one-vote margin.