The President of Tanzania, John Magufuli has died, according to the government ending days of speculations about his whereabouts.
The country’s vice president, Samia Suluhu said on live television on Wednesday evening that Magufuli succumbed to heart disease in Dar Es Salaam.
This announcement ends the search for the President of Tanzania who hasn’t been seen for weeks amid reports of contracting the Coronavirus.
President John Magufuli isn’t a man known to be absent from the public scene for that long as he is a regular church-goer, regular on TV, and on social media.
The 61-year-old leader, very outspoken was reported to have contracted coronavirus and rushed to Kenya for treatment.
Sooner he was reported to had gone to India for further treatment after suffering heart-attack.
But government officials refused to comment about his whereabouts for weeks even when there were reports of his death.
On Monday, the same Vice-President Samia Suluhu Hassan told Tanzanians not to listen to rumours and urged them to remain united.
“It’s quite normal for anybody to be afflicted by illness, to contract flu or a fever… this is the time for Tanzanians to be united through prayer,” she said.
But the first person to report of the death of Magufuli, an ex-spy of the government said on Wednesday that he “When I broke the news re: Magufuli’s demise, my sole intention was to inform the public. Not to deceive anyone. Not to compete with anyone.
Not to confuse anyone. Not to convince anyone. The burden of proof, for those of you doubting the news, rests on you: prove me wrong.”
President Magufuli has always refused to accept the fact that Covid-19 is real and deadly, in order to protect his citizens.
Instead of following science, he didn’t encourage the adherence to safety protocols, urging people to pray and consider the virus devilish.
A top presidential aide of Mr Magufuli died hours after the vice-president of the country’s semi-autonomous islands of Zanzibar died from Covid-19.
Last year, President Magufuli declared his country “coronavirus-free” saying the success was due to prayers by citizens.
He told worshippers in a church that “The corona disease has been eliminated thanks to God.”
President John Magufuli warned health officials in his country against acquiring coronavirus vaccines.
Magufuli had said that the vaccines could harm the population, but he didn’t provide any evidence to back that claim.
“The ministry of health should be careful, they should not hurry to try these vaccines without doing research, not every vaccine is important to us, we should be careful. We should not be used as ‘guinea pigs’,” Mr Magufuli said.