Former Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has died at the age of 95, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said.
It is with the utmost sadness that I announce the passing on of Zimbabwe's founding father and former President, Cde Robert Mugabe (1/2)— President of Zimbabwe (@edmnangagwa) September 6, 2019
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 (2/2)— President of Zimbabwe (@edmnangagwa) September 6, 2019
President Mnangagwa cut short his trip to South Africa where he was attending the World Economic Forum on Africa and is heading back to Zimbabwe, according to state media.
Mugabe was hospitalised in Singapore for months for an undisclosed ailment and no further details were immediately available about the circumstances of his death or where he died.
Mugabe was forced to step down by the military in November 2017 following nationwide mass protests.
Born on February 21, 1924, into a Catholic family at Kutama Mission northwest of Harare, Mugabe was described as a loner and a studious child, known to carry a book even while tending cattle in the bush.
Despite Zimbabwe's decline during his rule, He remained defiant, railing against the West for what he called its neo-colonialist attitude and urging Africans to take control of their resources, a populist message that was often a hit even as many nations on the continent shed the strongman model and moved towards democracy.
Towards the end of his rule, He served as rotating chairman of the 54-nation African Union and the 15-nation Southern African Development Community; his criticism of the International Criminal Court was welcomed by regional leaders who also thought it was being unfairly used to target African leaders.