Ex – President Robert Mugabe
Robert Mugabe, the founding father of Zimbabwe who ruled the country with an iron fist for more than three decades, has died, according to President Emmerson Mnangagwa. He was 95.
Rumors had swirled around the health of the ex-president, who spent months in a hospital in Singapore earlier this year. Details of what ailed him were a closely guarded secret, the CNN said.
Mugabe — who infamously claimed that “only God” could ever remove him from office — was deposed in a coup in 2017, when members of his own party turned against him after he dismissed then vice-president Emmerson Mnangagwa to make way for his wife, Grace.
Cde Mugabe was an icon of liberation, a pan-Africanist who dedicated his life to the emancipation and empowerment of his people. His contribution to the history of our nation and continent will never be forgotten. May his soul rest in eternal peace.”
Once touted internationally as the hope of his nation, Mugabe left office with a grim legacy, after waging a campaign of oppression and violence to maintain power, and driving into poverty a country once known as the breadbasket of southern Africa.
He began his political career as a leader in the quest for the independence of Zimbabwe — then known as Rhodesia — and was regularly compared to South Africa’s venerated freedom fighter Nelson Mandela.
As a revolutionary guerrilla leader, he fought white-minority rule and spent years in jail as a political prisoner.
After 10 years in prison, he earned university degrees in education, economics and law from the University of London. In the mid-70s, he assumed leadership of the political wing of the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU), a militant liberation movement based in Mozambique.
From there, he helped orchestrate an armed resistance against white rule, emerging as a war hero both at home and abroad when the conflict ended in 1979.