John Pombe Magufuli, the son of a peasant farmer who became Tanzania’s president in 2015, has died aged 61. Once praised for his no-nonsense approach, he went on to become a controversial leader, especially over his response to the coronavirus pandemic.
He was elected for a second term in 2020 amid opposition accusations of fraud and intimidation.
Before he was president he acquired the nickname “the bulldozer” for driving a programme to build roads as minister for works, and later was hailed for his anti-corruption stance and his distinct dislike for wasting money.
As president he was also accused of cracking down on dissent and curtailing certain freedoms, but following his death reflections on his time in power will be dominated by his idiosyncratic handling of Covid-19.