The Burundi royal family is the reigning family of Burundi as a monarchy before it was abolished in 1966. The royal family are considered to be of Ganwa and not neither Hutu or Tutsi ethnic groups. Royal descendants of the ganwa clan are many.
Kingdom of Burundi
The Kingdom of Burundi began in the 1500s century until 1966 when it was abolished by the government of prime minister Michel Micombero. Six years later the last King 24 year old King Ntare v Charles Ndizeye was killed in 1972.
Government: Monarchy abolished in 1966 but maintains a royal house.
Head of State: King (Mwami)
Royal House: Ganwa dynasty
Royal capital : Gitega
The ruling house was called the royal house of Ntwero. While the family is huge with having many descendants of previous kings, this post will feature mainly the royal family in the main line and in the modern photography world.
King – Mwami/Umwami
Queen – Mwamikazi
Queen mother – Mugabekazi
Prince – Muganwa
Princess – Muganwakazi
Kings(Abami) of Burundi
- Ntare I Rushatsi Cambarantama: c. 1530–c. 1550
- Mwezi I Baridamunka: c. 1550–c. 1580
- Mutaga I Mutabazi: c. 1580–c. 1600
- Mwambutsa I Nkomati: c. 1600–c. 1620
- Ntare II Kibogora: c. 1620–c. 1650
- Mwezi II Nyaburunga: c. 1650–c. 1680
- Mutaga II Senyamwiza Mutamo: c. 1680–c. 1700
- Mwambutsa II Nyarushamba: c. 1700–c. 1720
- Ntare III Kivimira Semuganzashamba: c. 1720–c. 1750
- Mwezi III Kavuyimbo (Ndagushimiye): c. 1750–c. 1780
- Mutaga III Sebitungwa: c. 1780–c. 1800
- Mwambutsa III Mbonyuburundi (Mbariza): c. 1800–c. 1830
- Ntare IV Runzi (Rutaganzwa Rugamba): c. 1830–c. 1850
- Mwezi IV Gisabo Bikata-Bijoga: c. 1850–1908
- Mutaga IV Mbikije: c. 1908–1915
- Mwambutsa IV Bangiricenge Rubangishamiheto: 1915–1966
- Ntare V Charles Ndizeye: 1966
Mwambutsa Royal Line
The descendants of this line are the last Royal family that ruled Burundi from 1915 to 1966. This includes king Mwambutsa iv, his son King Ntare V Charles Ndizeye, his son crown prince Louis Rwagasore, and daughters crown Princess Rosa Paula Iribagiza Mwambutsa and princess Regina Kanyange of Burundi.
King Ntare V Charles Ndizeye of Burundi
HM late King Ntare V Charles Ndizeye, the last King of Burundi was the last born child and son of late HM King Mwabutsa IV of Burundi and his second wife late HM Queen Baramparaye of Burundi. His father was removed from the throne and he succeeded him in 1966 June. However he reigned for a few months until November 1966 when the prime minister Michel Micombero overthrew the monarchy.
The king tried to take back the throne in 1972 but was assassinated by the then authorities. His body has never been found despite many searches by the royal family and burundi’s current government. He died at 24 years unmarried.
King Mwambutsa IV Bangiricenge of Burundi
HM late King Mwambutsa IV Bangiricenge of Burundi. He reigned from 1915 to 1966. He succeded his father HM King Mutaga IV.
He was married to HM late Queen Therese Kanyonga (divorced) and later to HM late Queen Baramparaye of Burundi.
He was father to late Crown Prince Louis Rwagasore, Crown Princess Rosa Paula iribagiza, late Princess Regina Kanyange and late King Ntare v Charles Ndizeye.
He died in 1977 and is buried in Switzerland according to his wishes.
HM late Queen Baramparaye was the second wife of late HM King Mwambutsa IV of Burundi. Born in 1929, she married him in 1946 at the age of 18. Together they had a son, the late King Ntare v Charles Ndizeye, last king of Burundi. After the fall of the monarchy she lived a simple life neglected by the Burundi government. She died in 2007 at the age of 80 receiving a state funeral.
Queen Therese Kanyonga of Burundi
HM late Queen Therese Kanyonga was the first wife of HM late King Mwambutsa IV of Burundi. Together they had three children namely : prince Louis Rwagasore, Princess Rosa Paula Iribagiza and Princess Regina Kanyange of Burundi. They later on divorced.
HRH late Prince Louis Rwagasore of Burundi was the eldest son of late HM King Mwambutsa IV of Burundi and his first wife HM Queen Therese Kanyonga of Burundi. He also served as the prime minister of the Kingdom of Burundi shortly before independence. Prince Rwagasore was assassinated by a Greek national and 3 Burundians who were members of the rival party that was pro belgian in 1961 at hotel Tanganyika. He was married to Princess Marie Rose Ntakimevyo in 1959. They had two daughters who died soon after their father after a suspected poisoning vaccine reaction. He is buried at the Louis Rwagasore national memorial and is usually celebrated in Burundi as an independence hero. Every 13 October is celebrated as Louis Rwagasore day in Burundi. Princess Marie Rose Ntamikevyo died in 1973 after a suspected poisoning as revealed by her parents.
- Princess Marie-Thérèse Rwagasore
- Princess Marie-Pia Rwagasore
Crown Princess Rosa Paula Iribagiza Mwambutsa of Burundi
HRH Crown Princess Rosa Paula Iribagiza Mwambutsa of Burundi is the only surviving child of late HM King Mwambutsa IV of Burundi and is the only surviving sibling of late HM King Ntare v Charles Ndizeye of Burundi. She was installed as head of the Royal family and heir of her father in the early 2000s and is recognised by the government of Burundi as such. However some suggest it’s against the tradition of male succession. She has served as a member of Parliament in Burundi government. She has 7 children. Her first husband was Prince Andre Muhirwa, who was a prime minister of Burundi at one time.
- Prince Rémy Ciza Muhirwa
- Prince Charles Muhirwa.
- Princess Louise Muhirwa
- Princess Michelle Muhirwa
- Anita Iribagiza
- Sheila Babile Kiliza
- David Kabunga wa Mwambutsa Hamisi Kiliza
Princess Regina Kanyange of Burundi
HRH late Princess Regina Kanyange was the last daughter of late HM King Mwambutsa IV and late Queen Therese Kanyonga. She was married with children. The Ndenzako female royal line is descended from her.
- Anne-Marie Ndenzako
- Aline Ndenzako
- Mireille Ndenzako
- Papaula Ndenzako
- Claudette Ndenzako
The Kamatari royal line
Prince Ignace Kamatari of Burundi
The Kamatari line descendants originate from Prince Ignace Kamatari of Burundi. He was the brother of HM late King Mwambutsa iv of Burundi. He was assassinated in 1970 and his family escaped to exile in Europe. He was married thrice with 4 sons and 4 daughters.
- Prince Komoni Deogratias Kamatari
- Prince Pascal Kamatari
- Prince Louis Kamatari
- Prince Godefroid Kamatari
- Princess Catherine Kamatari
- Princess Esther Kamatari
- Princess Baudouine Kamatari
- Princess Fabiola Kamatari
Princess Esther Kamatari of Burundi
HH princess Esther Kamatari of Burundi is the most famous member of the Burundi royal family. She is the daughter of late HRH Prince Ignace Kamatari (older brother of HM King Mwambutsa IV of Burundi) and one of his three wives Princess Agrippine. She ia therefore a cousin to the Princess Rosa Paula iribagiza Mwabutsa of Burundi. In 197o her father was assassinated forcing the family to exile in France. She started her modelling career and is today termed as the ever first black French model. With her charitable foundation she has helped many children and underprivileged people in Burundi during hard times. She was the face of guerlain French fashion house and still models at the age of 68. She has wished to run for president of Burundi with the Abahiza monarchist party. She is married to a French doctor with four children.Embed from Getty Images
The three leading royal ladies are buried in Gitega while King Mwambutsa IV was buried in Switzerland while King Ntare V Charles Ndizeye body has never been found. Prince Louis Rwagasore is buried at the Louis Rwagasore national memorial next to his two daughters
Photos courtesy of uMwami Mwambutsa page /Facebook and private collections.
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