The death of President Magufuli, a populist authoritarian and COVID-denier, officially from a heart failure, raises questions about whether newly sworn-in President Samia Suluhu Hassan will change course or maintain her predecessor’s authoritarian track. Tundu Lissu, Tanzania’s main opposition leader, joins Alan Boswell this week to discuss the late President Magufuli’s legacy and policies in Tanzania.
Tundu says President Magufuli’s death is an opportunity to reverse trends and ensure accountability in the country. He expects Samia Suluhu Hassan, Tanzania’s first woman president, to reverse the government’s response to Covid-19, as well as a variety of other policies pursued by Magufuli over the past five years.
Tundu tells Alan his biggest fear is the influence of the security forces, which amassed tremendous power under Magufuli, and hopes for a general improvement in the political atmosphere to secure democracy in Tanzania. He also answers Alan’s question on whether he plans to run again for president in the next elections.