Burundi president is world’s first state leader to die of Covid-19

The Burundian president died from the coronavirus, according to medics at the hospital where he was flown to following his death. 

The country’s government had announced Pierre Nkurunziza’s cause of death as from a heart attack. 

A medical source at the Karusi hospital where Nkurunziza died, has confirmed the president was in ‘respiratory distress’ before his death. 

Medics at the Kamenge university hospital in Bujumbura told AFP that the head of the institute of public health requested their hospital’s only ventilator and the head of our reanimation service ‘in the name of the presidency’ on Monday at 10am’. 

Nkurunziza had reportedly felt unwell on June 6 and ‘to very great surprise’ his health worsened, leading to a cardiac arrest from which he died in hospital, officials had said. 

His wife Denise was airlifted for coronavirus treatment in Kenya on May 30, prompting some suspicion about the president’s true cause of death.   

Nkurunziza was due to leave office in August after a controversial 15-year term marked by claims of repression and human rights abuses. 

It was announced on Friday that Burundi’s constitutional court has agreed that president-elect Evariste Ndayishimiye should be sworn in immediately after the death of Nkurunziza.  

Source: Daily Mail

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