Religion in Burundi


According to Countryaah data, the average population density is 403 residents per km 2. However, the population is highly concentrated in the more fertile highlands between 1,500 and 1,800 meters above sea level. The former capital Bujumbura (374,800 residents, 2010) is the dominant city.

According to thesciencetutor, Burundi’s population consists mainly of hutu, tutsi and twee. Hutu (8.7 million), who is a farming bantu, has lived here since the 9th century. They make up 82 percent of the population, but for several centuries they have been dominated by the Nilotic Shepherd Tutsi (1.4 million), who in the 15th century began to immigrate from the region around the Nile Valley and Ethiopia.

Two are called the 40,000 pygmies who were the original residents of the area and who until recently have lived as hunters and collectors, in addition to the exchange of goods with hutu and tutsi. Although twos in today’s Burundi are recognized as a separate population group, they are both discriminated against and marginalized. Due to the decomposition of forests to become agricultural land, many branches are forced to seek new sources of supply; Pottery has become an important opportunity for their survival.

The rule of the Tutsi people was based on a contract system for land and livestock, which was lent to the livestock-free hutu. From the 17th century, Tutsi also developed a political system of control through a feudal state, in which members of aristocratic clans competed for chief positions under the sacred king (mwami). Like many other African shepherds, Tutsi has also kept its distance to neighboring farmers through an effective war organization and one of aristocratic values ​​embedded in self-confidence.

People in Burundi

Although both hutu and twee were subjected to Tutsi’s dominion, it was between the resident, hack-using Hutu and the nomadizing, land-demanding Tutsi that the most tangible animosity developed. It culminated in the hutu revolt in 1959. Since then, political power in independent Burundi has alternated between hutu and Tutsi, occasionally in connection with veritable massacres, including in the form of genocide in 1972 and 1993. See also State Condition and Politics.


All ethnic groups in the country speak the bantu language rundi (kirundi), which is the official language together with French. Tutsi and twee have thus abandoned their former mother tongue.


In 1879, the first Catholic missionaries came to Burundi (then Urundi). After the First World War until independence in 1962, Burundi was a Belgian colony. Burundu is today a secular democratic republic with a high degree of religious freedom.

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The early Catholic mission, the Belgian colonial rule and a number of extensive evangelism campaigns have led to the fact that today about 90% of the population is Christian, of which 67% are said to be Catholics. Muslims make up about 5% of the population and the rest profess to indigenous, traditional African religion.

Burundi Religion