Zimbabwe: Tsvangirai - Kenya's Odinga Leads Africa Tributes

Morgan Tsvangirai.
17 February 2018

African pposition leaders have expressed sadness over the untimely death of MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai, describing his passing as a blow to Zimbabwean's hope for freedom in the "second liberation struggle".

Kenyan opposition chief Raila Odinga of the Orange Democratic Movement described Tsvangirai as a brave and dedicated leader who gave former president Robert Mugabe's dictatorship a torrid time.

"I have learnt of the passing of former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai with deep sorrow. Morgan dared to dream of democracy, freedom and justice for his country and his people despite the firm hands of dictatorship that held sway," he said on Twitter this Thursday.

Odinga, a friend of Tsvangirai, said the gap the MDC-T leader has left behind would be hard to fill and further imploring party leaders to preserve his legacy.

"Until his death Mr Tsvangirai remained a source of inspiration to a generation of leaders across the continent for his courage in the face of monumental odds. His death leaves a gap in a country that still needs strong forces of change to return to the path of democracy.

"I pray that the party he founded, the MDC, will hold firm and pursue the ideals he lived for. My family, our party the Orange Democratic Movement and the National Super Alliance join Mr. Tsvangirai's family, the MDC and the people of Zimbabwe in mourning his death."

Tsvangirai died this Wednesday after battling colon cancer for nearly three years.

Elsewhere, McHenry Venaani, leader of Namibia's Popular Democratic Movement, said Africa and the world had lost an outstanding pro-democracy activist who believed in the socio-economic and political empowerment of his people.

"Not a lot of individuals have fought fearlessly as Tsvangirai has. The late Tsvangirai has fought on all fronts ranging from constitutional referendums with fundamental and important bill of rights, and political intimidation," said Venaani who promised to attend the funeral.

"He participated in a couple of elections that centred on balancing power and shifting the economy of his own country into a positive state and also fighting to end the African country's syndrome of one party dominant system."

The Zimbabwe government has offered to meet all funeral expenses including the repatriation of Tsvangirai's body from South Africa where he died while receiving treatment.

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