By John Cassim
HARARE, Zimbabwe (AA) - The Zimbabwean president on Thursday issued a condolence message following the death of opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
“I wish to express deepest condolences to the Tsvangirai family on the sad death yesterday evening of Morgan Richard Tsvangirai, the former prime minister of Zimbabwe and leader of the opposition MDC-T party," Emmerson Mnangagwa said in a statement.
Tsvangirai, 65, died Wednesday in South Africa. The former prime minister had reportedly been suffering from colon cancer.
Mnangagwa, unlike his predecessor Robert Mugabe, has reached out to the opposition leader, calling him a national figure who insisted on "free, fair, credible and non-violent elections in his bid to strengthen the country's democracy and re-engagement with the international community".
Following the inception of the Movement for Democracy Party (MDC) in 1999, Tsvangirai was assaulted and arrested several times by Mugabe, who has ruled the country for 37 years.
Mugabe was ousted last December after weeks-long military intervention in the country.
Also, hundreds of party workers gathered at the MDC head quarters mourning the death of their leader.