Friday 15 February 2019


ELIZABETH Macheka, widow of the late MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai, yesterday poured her heart out, sharing intricate details of the couple’s psychologically-draining journey from the day the former Prime Minister was diagnosed with cancer of the colon to the moment he breathed his last.

Tsvangirai succumbed to cancer on February 14 last year after a two-year-battle with the disease.

Speaking at a well-attended memorial service of the late Tsvangirai at the Harare Exhibition Park, Elizabeth said: “He was a very brave man, very courageous and he was just a hero. He was a patient man that at times you would wonder whether he was angry or not. When you expected him to be angry, he would maintain his cool.
“We went to the doctor and all tests were done, so we were waiting for the results for about two hours. I could see that his body was not well, but he put on a brave face and insisted that he was OK.”

“After two hours, the doctor came and he said ‘unfortunately, I don’t have good news for you’. This doctor is a white Zimbabwean working from South Africa. He looked at Tsvangirai and did not know where to start from,” she said.
“Then he looked at me. I was shaking. I could see that he was trying to console me. We were given the results. The doctor was crying, and he said we have less than 24 hours to go for operation because the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. I was in tears. The doctor was crying, but instead of him (Tsvangirai) being worried, he was busy consoling me and the doctor. That’s how strong he was.”

She said well-wishers assembled a team of medical experts from different countries to try and save Tsvangirai’s life.

“During his last months, we went to East Africa. We had doctors from France, the United States and India who came to try and find if they could help him. A lot of people knew Tsvangirai, he was just a hero and he was loved,” Elizabeth said. 

She also opened up on how Tsvangirai was duped into believing that Zanu PF was ready to form a transitional government with the MDC to ensure implementation of political reforms before going for polls.

“Tsvangirai supported the new dispensation whole-heatedly thinking it was a new dispensation because he thought it would open a new page that would allow Zimbabweans to work together and chart a new narrative for the people,” she said. 

Speaking at the same occasion, Tsvangirai’s successor Nelson Chamisa also said Zanu PF had in 2018 promised a transitional government and reforms, before making a U-turn and pushed for elections held on July 30.

He said Tsvangirai died a bitter man after being betrayed by President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government. Newsday


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