- President of Tanzania John Magufuli said Tanzanians were God-fearing and had continued to seek him even when faced with difficult situations like the coronavirus
- The head of state had in a number of occasions downplayed Covid-19, claiming it was being used as a weapon of war
- The latest coronavirus update from Tanzania Health Ministry was last released when the country recorded 196 cases on April 28
Tanzania president John Pombe Magufuli has said his country has won the battle against the coronavirus.
Magufuli, who spoke when he hosted his predecessors Benjamin Mkapa, Hassan Mwinyi and Jakaya Kikwete, attributed the success to prayers and timely God's intervention.
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He said Tanzanians were God-fearing and had continued to seek him even when faced with difficult situations like the coronavirus pandemic, Swahili Times reported.
"Even at this time when we are fighting coronavirus, God has helped us win. I don't see anyone wearing a face mask here, this is a clear indication Tanzania is safe," he told his guests.
Magufuli had in the past declared a three-day national prayer as the country turned to God in one of the most difficult times in the wake of the pandemic.
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In a statement released on Thursday, April 17, he asked Tanzanians to converge in their respective denominations and pray for God's intervention.
"Fellow Tanzanians, following the coronavirus pandemic, I would like to request you to use three days starting April 17-19 (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) to pray to God who has power over all things to save us from this disease. Let us all pray in our respective denominations and regions, he will listen," he said.
The Head of state had in a number of occasions downplayed Covid-19, claiming it was being used as a weapon of war.
This is despite sending his delegation to Madagascar to fetch the islanders' herbal tonic for treatment of the deadly global virus.
The latest coronavirus update from Tanzania Health Ministry was last released on Thursday, April 28 when the country recorded 196 cases on a single day.
The numbers have remained static at 509.
Since then, the government opted not to update the public, prompting opposition MPs to accuse the government of hiding actual numbers.
At least three MPs, including a Cabinet minister, died in one week under unclear circumstances, prompting opposition politicians to boycott sittings.
On his part, Magufuli raised concerns over the high numbers of coronavirus cases in the country, claiming the testing kits were faulty.
The head of state said he, together with his officials, took samples of a pawpaw, oil, a goat, sheep, among others to the laboratory to test for Covid-19.
He also labelled the samples and after testing, the car oil came out negative, but the pawpaw and the goat tested positive.
"We saw it (laboratory) was just testing positive and I therefore sent some officials to go check on the testing kits... I always say, not everything given to you is in good condition. It could be sabotage because this is a war," he said.
Following the misunderstandings, the ministry suspended the National Health Laboratory director and quality manager.
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