Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) has granted citizenship to ex-president of Burkina Faso Mr Blaise Compaore. This comes following his extradition for his supposed role in the murder of the former president and military leader, Thomas Sankara.
An arrest warrant was issued against the ex-president in December 2015 for the murder of Thomas Sankara. The ex-president is believed to have been responsible for the death of Sankara for various reasons including; his reversal of all the national policies Sankara made upon assumption of power, his refusal to grant the Sankara family the right to exhume his body, his obsession with the seat of power for 27 years, among others.
Sankara led Burkina Faso from 1983 to 1987. At the time, it was called Upper Volta but he changed the name upon assumption of power to Burkina Faso. The military leader who sought to make the country self-dependent and corruption-free was assassinated in a coup d’etat in 1987. The assassination was believed to have been carried out by the second in command, ex-president Blaise Compaore who was believed to be good friends with the late Thomas Sankara.
The mystery of Sankara’s death has been unsolved for 30 years. In 2015 his body was unearthed and an autopsy found it to be perforated with bullets, leading to an arrest warrant for Mr Blaise Compaore.
Ivory Coast in a naturalization decree granted Compaore and his son, Paul francois Ivorian citizenship.
“It is a sovereign naturalization decision that took place,” said Affoussiata Bamba, the government spokeswoman. “It is not necessary to judge what will come next.”
Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso share cultural ties. Mr Compaore’s wife is an Ivorian, he has also been in exile in Ivory Coast since his overthrow in 2014. The ex-president led Burkina Faso for 27 years but was ousted after Burkinabés were against his proposition to extend his rule for five more years.