2020 will have been the year of terrible tragedies. It is notably marked by the coronavirus pandemic which continues to decimate humanity. A lot of bad news was announced in 2020. And for the most part, it revolves around the death of former presidents, especially those of Africa. According to this recap, 10 African presidents have passed from life to death this year.
Here are 10 former African presidents who died in 2020.
1. Pierre Buyoya (Burundi)
Pierre Buyoya died in Paris from COVID-19 at the age of 71. Buyoya has been credited with helping advance democracy in this small African country but has been accused of being involved in the assassination of his successor.
2. Pierre Nkurunziza (Burundi)
Pierre Nkurunziza died just after the presidential elections. He is believed to have died of respiratory problems, although some claim he died of COVID-19.
3. Edem Kodjo (Togo)
The former diplomat died at the age of 82 in Paris, the French capital, on April 11. Kodjo was Prime Minister twice, the first from 1994 to 1996 and the second from 2005 to 2006, under former President Gnassingbe Eyadema.
4. Daniel Arap Moi (Kenya)
Mr. Moi, a former schoolteacher, was President of Kenya for 24 years, becoming the country’s oldest President. He died after a long illness.
5. Emmanuel Issoze Ngondet (Gabon)
In June, Gabonese President Ali Bongo announced the death of former Prime Minister Emmanuel Issoze-Ngondet. He was Prime Minister between 2016 and 2019 until he was replaced by Julien Nkoghe Bekale.
6. Amadou Gon Coulibaly (Ivory Coast)
Amadou Gon Coulibaly died at the age of 61 in Abidjan, the capital of the country. The deceased had returned home just a week earlier after a two-month absence during which he was receiving medical treatment in France.
7. Benjamin Mkapa (Tanzania)
He died at the age of 81 in a hospital in Dar es Salaam. Born on November 12, 1938, Mkapa ruled Tanzania from 1995 to 2005 before passing the baton to Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete. He was the third president of this East African nation and led several regional peace mediation efforts.
8. Jerry John Rawlings (Ghana)
The former Ghanaian president has died at the age of 73. He had served about a third of the years after Ghana’s independence. He served two terms as a military leader and two terms as democratically elected president.
9. Amadou Toumani Toure (Mali)
He died at the age of 72 in a hospital in Turkey. He was recovering from a heart operation he had undergone in Bamako before his condition deteriorated, which resulted in his evacuation to Turkey, according to his doctor. Touré was president of Mali from 2002 to 2012 before being overthrown in a military coup. His successor, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, was also overthrown this year by a mutiny following large anti-government protests.
10. Mamadou Tandja (Niger)
The former president of Niger also died at the end of November at the age of 82. He had won two elections after the country returned to civilian rule in 1999. He was overthrown ten years later following a constitutional change that allowed him to remain in power.