Zim opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai has died

JOHANNESBURG – Morgan Tsvangirai, Zimbabwe’s opposition leader, has died aged 65. Tsvangirai died in a hospital in Johannesburg, South Africa after a long struggle with cancer.

“Dr Morgan Richard Tsvangirai has not been feeling well for some time, it is sad for me to announce that we have lost our icon and fighter for democracy. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, the party and the nation at this hour,” said Elias Mudzuri, one of the MDC’s vice presidents, said on Twitter.

“Tsvangirai’s death will force the MDC to convene an emergency conference to sort out the differences between the three vice-leaders. His sickness meant an impasse around internal dynamics so this might force a resolution. That’s a possible silver lining to this tragic event,” said Piers Pigou, Zimbabwe analyst for the International Crisis Group.

“He was the presidential candidate for the opposition alliance. Recently they have been campaigning on the spirit of Tsvangirai alone. The dilemma is now to find someone who will play that central role,” said Pigou.

 

Morgan Tsvangirai was born on March 10, 1952 in Gutu, Zimbabwe. His father was a mine worker, carpenter, and farmer.He attended St. Marks Goneso Primary School Hwedza. He then transferred to Chikara Primary School Gutu. For his secondary education, he attended Gokomere High School.

He served as prime minister in a coalition government from 2009 to 2013. In his early career he proved to be an extremely hard worker and worked in a nickel mine for over a decade. He quickly gained recognition and rose in the ranks of the Mine Workers Union eventually becoming secretary-general.

Below – Morgan Tsvangirai leaving a Zimbabwean prison cell after detention upon speaking against the ruling party Zanu PF.

Temba Mliswa, an independent MP, called Tsvangirai “a true democrat who fearlessly stood up to the Mugabe regime and was an inspiration to many. Although we may have differed politically I held a deep respect for MT.” Temba said.

 

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