Tanzanian president, John Pombe Magufui, a known COVID-19 sceptic, is reported to be on life support following a stroke induced by the viral disease.
Opposition leader Tundu Antiphas Lissa reported Tanzania Intelligence and Security Service (TISS) sources saying Magufuli is currently paralysed on one side and from the waist down after a stroke.
Lissu left Tanzania for Belgium after disputing his election defeat to Magufuli last year. He tweeted:
VP Samia suggested today that the Dictator is sick somewhere. My own sources in TISS say he’s on life support with COVID and paralyzed on one side and from the waist down after a stroke. Tell the people the truth! Release Peter Silayo na Melchiory Shayo detained in Kilimanjaro!
Magufuli has not been seen in public since 27 February and reports suggested that he had been airlifted to India for treatment after contracting the coronavirus.
However, two officials recently told Al Jazeera that Magufuli is in good health and working normally. Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa is quoted on Friday as saying:
Tanzanians should be at peace. Your president is around, healthy, working hard. To spread rumours that he is sick is just an outcome of hate.
… I have decided to say this to give hope to Tanzanians that our president is around. If he were sick, would I talk to him on the phone? He sent his greetings to you.