COVID-19: Nationwide Fear grips Tanzania as President Magufuli dies


How Magufuli, a non-believer in the existence and threats of COVID-19, was hospitalised, died in Dar es Salaam hospital  – Vice President 



Tanzania’s President John Magufuli is dead.

The President who died on Wednesday evening was a non-believer in the existence and threats of COVID-19 and his death has spontaneously thrown the East African nation into a state of apprehension and mourning.

Annoucing the sad event on state television on Wednesday night, the Vice-President, Samia Suluhu Hassan, said Magufuli died of heart failure at 6 pm local time at the Mzena Hospital in Dar es Salaam.

He was 61.

Magufuli had mocked global panic over the Covid-19 pandemic and played down the virus’s threat in Tanzania.

He denounced Covid-19 tests, denounced vaccines, and opposed mask-wearing, instead urging his people to put faith in prayer and try remedies such as steam inhalation.

Magufuli, who had been using a pacemaker for some time, also contracted Covid-19, which might have caused complications with his heart condition.

Magufuli was last seen in public at an event on February 27 and his absence caused widespread speculation about the state of his health, with some Tanzanians expressing fear and anxiety due to the unknown status of the president.

On Tuesday, an opposition leader urged the government to tell the public about the president’s health, saying citizens had the right to know about his condition.

Zitto Kabwe, leader of the ACT-Wazalendo party said, ‘The president’s health is not supposed to be a secret,’ recalling that Tanzanians received regular updates on the health of two former presidents, Benjamin Mkapa and Jakaya Kikwete, when they were abroad for medical treatment.

Platforms Africa has sent a condolences message to the government and people of Tanzania over the death of the President.

“He was a President who became so popular among his people and across the continent based on his selfless services to the people and his dedication to the quality service delivery.

“He will be sorely missed by Africa but he will be remembered for putting the people first in all he did,” a statement issued by Admin of Platforms Africa, Adeola Yusuf, read.

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