Kenyan government officials aboard a plane headed to Tanzania’s former President Benjamin Mkapa’s funeral service were forced to return to Kenya mid-air on Tuesday.
According to Tanzania online publication outlet The Citizen, authorities cited bad weather as the reason why the plane returned back to Nairobi.
Foreign Affairs and East African Cooperation Minister, Prof Palamagamba Kabudi told mourners that the plane had safely landed in Kenya’s capital.
Senate Majority Leader Samuel Poghisio was to represent President Uhuru Kenyatta at the function held at Uhuru Stadium in Dar es Salaam.
The late Benjamin William Mkapa, 81, was confirmed dead by Tanzania’s Head of State John Pombe Magufuli.
While relaying the news on Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC) July 24, President Magufuli said Mr Mkapa died at Dar es Salaam Hospital where he was admitted.
“I call on all Tanzanians to receive the news of his death and to pray for Mzee Mkapa. More information will be released but Mzee Mkapa is no more,” he said in a brief television statement.
The late Mkapa will be buried Wednesday at his home in Lupaso village of Masasi district in the Mtwara region.
Tanzanian government announced this on Friday, saying the public will pay their last respects for three days – from Sunday to Tuesday – at Uhuru Stadium in Temeke district.