By Spy Correspondent
Dar es-Salaam: Tanzania’s former President Benjamin Mkapa, who served from 1995 to 2005, died in the early hours of Friday, President John Magufuli said in a statement.
Mkapa, the East African nation’s third president who led several regional peace mediation efforts in office and afterwards, died while receiving treatment at a hospital in Dar es Salaam, Magufuli said.
“I call on all Tanzanians to receive the news of his death and to pray for Mzee Mkapa. More information will be released but Mzee Mkapa is no more,” he said in brief television statement.
He also declared a seven-day mourning period. During this time, all flags in the country will be flown at half-mast.
“Magufuli asks all Tanzanians to remain calm, patient and united during this difficult time,” a statement from his office said.
Mkapa, 81, also served as an ambassador, minister and key official of the ruling CCM party, Magufuli said.