The leading opposition candidate in Congo-Brazzaville’s presidential election is in hospital with Covid-19, while voting is underway.

In a video circulating on social media, 61-year-old Guy Brice Parfait Kolelas is seen briefly removing an oxygen mask to tell his supporters that he is “fighting death”.

He urges them to vote in the election.

President Denis Sassou Nguesso, who is widely seen as an authoritarian ruler, is expected to win again.

Mr Kolelas, who is diabetic, is one of six candidates running against Mr Sassou Nguesso, 77.

Family members have said they are trying to arrange for him to be evacuated to France for treatment.

Mr Kolelas missed his final campaign event on Friday after saying a day earlier that he feared he had malaria, the Associated Press news agency reports.

He was admitted to a private hospital in the capital, Brazzaville, and it was later confirmed that he had Covid-19.

Speaking in French from his hospital bed, Mr Kolelas said: “My dear compatriots, I am in trouble. I am fighting death.

However, I ask you to stand up and vote for change. I would not have fought for nothing.”

Source: BBC

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