Speculation has been rife since Monday over the whereabouts of Tanzania’s President John Magufuli, who has been missing in action for weeks now amid reports that he was taken ill.
Many Tanzanians and Kenyans have been speculating that he could be the seriously ill “African leader” reported in local media, led by Nation, to have been admitted at a Nairobi hospital on Tuesday under tight security.
Among those who have demanded a statement from the Tanzanian government is the exiled opposition leader Tundu Lissu, who tweeted that it was, “a matter of grave public concern”.
According to Nation newspaper, an African leader, whose name it refused to disclose over diplomatic issues, had been admitted to a city hospital with breathing difficulties.
Magufuli has been criticised for mishandling of the Covid-19 pandemic in the country after declaring Tanzania Coronavirus-free last year and mocking Kenya over measures it took.
The controversial and populist Tanzanian president also warned health officials in the East African country against accepting Covid-19 vaccines from foreign nations on trust grounds.
But recently Magufuli admitted publicly that Coronavirus was ravaging the country and told citizens to wear masks, as tens of top-ranking state officials reportedly died from the virus.
Those who have died from what is said to be Covid-19 include State House chief secretary John Kijazi, former deputy finance minister Gregory Teu, former Bank of Tanzania governor Benno Ndulu and Zanzibar’s first vice-president Maalim Seif Sharrif Hamad.