ODM Leader Raila Odinga and late Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli were more than just friends.

The two leaders enjoyed a relationship of over two decades often referencing to each other as "ndugu yangu" (my brother) and "rafiki yangu" (my friend).

Magufuli died on Wednesday, March 16, 2021, at the age of 61.

Raila and Magufuli often visited each other and supported each other's ideologies on governance.

File image of ODM Leader Raila Odinga and fallen Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli in ODM colours. |Photo| Courtesy|

For instance, in the 2017 presidential debate, the former Prime Minister used the term, "I will Magufuli them". Meaning he would adopt a no-nonsense approach in leadership.

This can be depicted from the late president's style of leadership.

As Cabinet Minister for Roads during the President Mwai Kibaki government, Raila was famed for his tough approach towards the construction of roads in the country.

He brought down buildings along the Thika superhighway to pave way for it's construction.

Magufuli was Tanzania's Minister for Roads and Infrastructure prior to his presidency. A period with which he shaped the country's road networks, and streamlined tendering.

Raila's approach translated to his election as African Union Commission High Representative for Infrastructure and Development.

The two leaders had a strong belief in each other's ability to transform their respective countries.

Magufuli endorsed Raila's presidential bid in 2013, terming him as a leader who would transform Kenya's fortunes.

In a national delegates convention in 2012, Magufuli donned ODM colours as a show of solidarity towards Raila's presidential aspirations.

Following his untimely demise, Raila shared Magufuli's photo in ODM colours calling him a close friend.

In 2015, Raila became Magufuli's biggest cheerleader, endorsing him as Tanzania's best bet in developing the country.

Months before becoming president, Magufuli visited Raila and his family at his Bondo home to condole with him following the death of Fidel Odinga.

The former premier has also visited Magufuli's native home of Chato, North West Tanzania.

Leaders from across the world have poured in messages of condolence to friends, family and the people of Tanzania for their sudden loss.

File image of ODM Leader Raila Odinga when he visited fallen Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli at his Chato home. |Photo| Courtesy|