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Tanzanian Presidents celebrate Mkapa 81st birthday, launch memoir

ALL PRESIDENTS: Mwinyi (left), Mkapa, Kikwete and Magufuli

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania | THE INDEPENDENT | Retired President Benjamin William Mkapa was joined by the current and two other former Tanzania Presidents as he launched his book “My Life, My Purpose” in Dar on Tuesday.

In the memoir launched by President John Magufuli at the Uongozi (Leadership) Institute, Mkapa opens up about what drove him to make key decisions as President. According to a report in the THE CITIZEN of Tanzania, he reflects in the memoir on some of the country’s scandals, including one that resulted in people swindling from an External Payment Account.

The book, written in conjunction with the Uongozi Institute in Dar, took four years to write. Tuesday was also Mkapa’s 81st birthday, having been born  November 12, 1938.

Speaking at the launch of the book,chief executive of Uongozi Prof Joseph Semboja said they are planing something similar for another former president Mwinyi. “The launch of former President Benjamin Mkapa’s book is just the beginning and very soon we shall be celebrating Mzee Hassan Mwiniy’s life,” said Semboja, according to  THE CITIZEN of Tanzania.

At the launch, current president Magufuli who was minister under Mkapa, revealed the perils of getting to the top, saying he was once poisoned.

“I remember President Mkapa once pronounced me as his first aide due to the work I was doing in the construction ministry, but this had a negative impact because some ministers started to hate me. No sooner I was poisoned while in Dodoma,” Magufuli said.

He said his decision then to resign was rejected by President Mkapa.

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