PBA REPORT: Zimbabwean leader Robert Mugabe has died at the age of 95. The former prime minister and president of Zimbabwe’s rule was mired in accusations of human rights abuses and corruption.
Robert Mugabe, the first prime minister and later president of independent Zimbabwe, who traded the mantle of liberator for the armor of a tyrant and presided over the decline of one of Africa’s most prosperous lands, died Friday. He was 95.
The death was announced by his successor, President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
“It is with the utmost sadness that I announce the passing on of Zimbabwe’s founding father and former President, Cde Robert Mugabe,” he wrote on Twitter on Friday, using the abbreviation for comrade. “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.”
In August, Mnangagwa had said that Mugabe had spent several months in Singapore getting treatment for an undisclosed illness.
Mugabe, the world’s oldest head of state before his ouster in 2017, was the only leader Zimbabweans had known since independence, in 1980. Like many who liberated their countries, Mugabe believed that Zimbabwe was his to govern until the end. In a speech before the African Union in 2016, he said he would remain at the helm “until God says, ‘Come.’”