The soft spoke veteran politician, Samia Suluhu Hassan made history on Friday at a ceremony in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam, before numerous dignitaries, to be sworn in as East African country’s first female President shortly after the death of Mangufuli.
Hassan, 61, in her first public speech as president announced 21 days of mourning for Mangufuli and public holidays on March 22, and on March 25 – the day the president will be buried.
“It is not a good day for me to talk to you because I have a ‘wound’ in my heart,” said Hassan. “Today, I have taken an oath different from the rest that I have taken in happiness. Today, I took the highest oat of office in mourning, she said , after being sworn in at 10am local (7:00 GMT) on Friday.
Hassan ascended to the presidency after president Mangufuli’s death due to heart disease as announced by the government on Wednesday, more than two weeks after he was last seen in public. Although his death has sparked rumors that he had contracted Covid 19, even as officials denied he was ill.
Tanzanian consitition permits the Vice President to serve out the remaining length of term of president who dies in office. Mangufuli, who was first elected in 2015, secured a second five year term in office in October polls last year.
The constitution also states that after consultation with their party, the new president will propose a deputy, the choice to be confirmed by the votes of no fewer than 50 percent of the National Assembly.
Hassan urged the country’s people to work to unite the Nation, showing love towards one another, and confidently looking forward for the best.
“It is not the time to point fingers at each other, but to hold hands and move forward to build the new Tanzania that President Mangufuli aspired to,” she said amid opposition claim about the cause of Mangufuli’s death.
Lolo Ijeoma Njoku reporting, Obinwannem News