Tributes pour in for former Tanzania President Benjamin William Mkapa

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Tanzania’s former president Benjamin Mkapa dies at 81
By :
Baluku Geoffrey

Leaders and members of the public across Africa and the world at large have been paying tribute since Benjamin Mkapa’s death was announced earlier this morning by Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli.

In a post on Twitter, President Magufuli said he was saddened by the death of Mzee Benjamin Mkapa.

“I am saddened by the death of our Elder Benjamin Mkapa (Retired President of Phase 3),” President Magufuli posted on twitter.

“I will remember him for his great love for the Nation, his faith, hard work and performance in building the economy,” he said, adding that “Certainly the Nation has lost a strong pillar.

Born in 1938, Mzee Benjamin William Mkapa died in the early hours of Friday, July 24 at a Dar eS Salaam Hospital where he had been admitted, President Magufuli said in an earlier televised address on Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC).

“I call on all Tanzanians to receive the news of his death and pray for Mzee Mkapa,” Dr Magufuli said, adding that more information will be released.

In his message of comfort to Tanzanian President John Joseph Pombe Magufuli, the People of the United Republic of Tanzania and the family of Former President Benjamin Mkapa who passed away earlier today, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta mourned the departed Tanzanian leader as an outstanding East African who worked tirelessly for the integration, peace and progress of the region.

On his part, Burundian President Evariste Ndayishimiye said he was deeply saddened by the demise of HE Benjamin William Mkapa.

Also Read: Tanzania’s former president Benjamin Mkapa dies, presidency says

Among others who have since paid tributes are Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat, and African leaders across the political spectrum.

Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda where Benjamin Mkapa attained his first degree in English said they had received the “news of the demise of former President of Tanzania H.E. Benjamin Mkapa with deep sorrow.”

ODM Leader Raila Odinga said that in Mkapa’s death, Africa has lost a giant. He revealed that Kenyans “retain fond memories of his mediation efforts alongside Dr Koffi Annan and Graca Machel that helped the country return to peace after the 2007-2008 election violence.”

“My thoughts and prayers are with his family, President John Pombe Magufuli and the people of the United Republic of Tanzania,” he posted on Twitter.

Ugandan Opposition Leader Kiiza Besigye said Mkapa leaves a great legacy of public service with integrity.

 

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