The death of Zimbabwe opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai came as a shock to the nation and the continent. Tsvangirai, the leader of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) was for a long time a major voice against former president Robert Mugabe. Tsvangirai was a colossal  political figure, and a charismatic leader. Save, as Tsvangirai was affectionately known was undoudtedly the most effective opposition leader in Zimbabwe since independence.

Between 2009 and 2013, he was made Prime Minister, but this came after years battling Mugabe’s brutal regime, having survived numerous beating and assault. Tsvangirai founded the MDC in 1999 and became the main opposition voice to Mugabe’s corrupt regime and inept leadership.

To say that a dark day has descended in Zimbabwe is not an understatement, as many have come on social media to express their condolences to a man that stood up to power. Tsvangirai, many say, at least lived to see Mugabe vacate power.

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The 65-year-old opposition leader was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2016. He was in and out of South African hospital where he was receiving treatment. Constantly at loggerheads with Mugabe, Tsvangirai was arrested on numerous occasions for plotting to kill Mugabe, inciting violence and civil disobedience. The treason case was however later thrown out of court following years of legal battle.

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The role Tsvangirai played as the secretary general of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) in opposing taxes led to an assassination attempt. When opposition supporters were attacked during the build up to the run-off election, Tsvangirai refused to compete, leading to a negotiated Government of National Unity.

The conversations on opposition politics in Zimbabwe can never be complete without the name Morgan Tsvangirai. Condolences on social media have been pouring in from around the globe.