DAR-ES-SALAM, TANZANIA – Tanzania’s fifth President, John Pombe Magufuli aka Bull-dozer was finally laid to rest on Friday, March 26 at his ancestral home in Chato, Geita, Northwest of Tanzania.
It was all grief and tears as family members, locals and Tanzanian leaders bid their final farewells to the departed leader, who had led the nation for five years.
Speaking at an earlier requiem service, former Tanzanian leader Jakaya Kikwete, under who Magufuli served in three cabinet positions, hailed the deceased for moving the country to great heights in such a short period of time.
“In my time, I made him minister of Lands, and then moved him to Fisheries and later Works because these were the most difficult ministries and they needed somebody that would make things move,” Kikwete recounted.
“When you are serving as president, in your fast term you are working for re-election, while in the second term you want to focus on your legacy. My legacy was to connect the entire Tanzania with good roads and that’s why I appointed Magufuli to the Ministry of Works.”
“He told me to simply give him the authority and leave the rest to him and indeed, in a short time we were able to connect nearly all provinces.”
Tanzania’s chief of defense forces Venance Salvatory Mabeyo assured the woman who replaced Magufuli has Tanzania’s new leader, President Samia Suluhu, of the military’s continued unwavering support to her as the country’s new commander-in-chief.
On her part, the new President Samia Suluhu called on the people of Tanzania to stand together and show love for their country in the midst of external pressures following the death of their leader.
“We need to show unity and love for our country. If there has ever been a time to show love for the country and to be patriotic, that time is now, when we have lost our general.
Magufuli died on Friday March 15th in Dar es Salaam where he was being treated for heart disease.
Several countries, among them Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda, have observed national mourning days for Magufuli.