Robert Mugabe: Facts about a leader who clung to power

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe died at the age of 95. (Reuters)

Former President of Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe died at the age of 95 on September 6. Mugabe was suffering from ill health, accorrding to a report by BBC. 

Mugabe, who was a longtime leader of Zimbabwe, was forced to resign in 2017 after a military takeover. He was a former guerrilla chief who took power after the end of white minority rule in 1980.  He presided over a country whose early promise was eroded by economic turmoil and human rights violations. Here are some facts about him: 

* In 1964, Mugabe was jailed for 10 years for opposing white minority rule. After his release from jail, he became leader of the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) liberation movement in the mid-1970s. The ZANU was a militant organisation that fought against white minority rule in Rhodesia. 

* Mugabe became the Prime Minister of Zimbabwe after winning the independence elections in 1980. He was the first president of Zimbabwe in 1987 after a change in the constitution.

* In 2000, Mugabe was defeated when voters in a referendum rejected a constitution that would have given him more power. 

* Mugabe blamed white race minority for his defeat in 2000. He pushed legislation through parliament allowing his government to seize white-owned farms causing violence against whites.

* Mugabe’s party lost its parliamentary majority for the first time in the March 2008 elections.


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