By: Rpf Gakwerere
On Monday, 22 March 21, The Republic of Congo’s main opposition candidate Guy-Brice Parfait Kolelas died as he was being transferred to France for treatment for Covid-19.
Kolelas died in a medical aircraft which came to airlift him from Brazzaville on Sunday, afternoon, 21 March 2021.
He first tested positive for Covid-19 on Friday, 19 March 2021, and fell seriously ill. He spent election day in hospital.
While in ICU hospital bed, the 61 year old Kolelas, who was diabetic, released a video message and in this video, he could be seen briefly removing an oxygen mask to tell his supporters that he is “fighting death”.
“Rise up as one person … I’m fighting on my deathbed. You, too, fight for your change,” he urged his supporters, saying the election was “about the future of your children”.
Kolelas was one of six candidates running against Denis Sassou Nguesso, 77, and was seen as the main opposition candidate. He was the runner-up in 2016’s presidential election and has been widely seen as the main political threat to Sassou Nguesso, who has led the central African country since 1979.