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Magufuli announces three days to mourn former Zimbabwean President Mugabe

Yesterday morning President Magufuli sent condolences to Zimbabwean President Emerson Mnangagwa, the family of Mugabe, the people of Zimbabwe and all Africans, who had been touched by the death of Mugabe.

“I have received with great sorrow the news of retired President and Father of the Nation of Zimbabwe Mzee Robert Gabriel Mugabe. Africa has lost one of the bravest, boldest and Pan Africanist and the one who denounced colonialism in action. May God rest his soul in peace, Amen.”

President Magufuli added that Mugabe loved Tanzania, established close and cordial relationship and cooperation with Tanzania since the leadership of the Father of the Nation Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere and that Africa would remember him for the way he cooperated with various leaders to denounce colonialism and the oppression of African rights.

President Magufuli and Ugandan President Yoweri Museven yesterday paid tribute to former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, with Magufuli describing him as “Africa’s hero”. Before delivering his keynote address when opening the Business Forum in Dar es Salaam that involved members of the business community from Tanzania and Uganda, President Magufuli asked the audience to observe a minute of silence in honour of the Founding Father of Zimbabwe.

“I have received with deep sadness the news of the death of former President and Father of the Nation of Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe. Africa has indeed lost one of the boldest leaders, a Pan Africanist, who firmly resisted colonialism.

May his soul rest in peace, Amen,” President Magufuli said. Mr Mugabe, who ruled Zimbabwe for 37 years, died yesterday morning at the age of 95 years, while undergoing treatment in Singapore. He is remembered not only among the longest serving African leaders, but also one of the most educated president in the world.

In an interview with the ‘Daily News’, some academicians were quick to tell how Tanzania and Africa at large would remember the African hero. Mr Faraja Kristomus of the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM)’s Institute of Development Studies said Mr Mugabe would be remembered by Tanzanians as a person, who admired and respected founding President Julius Nyerere as his role model.

“Mr Mugabe respected Mwalimu Julius Nyerere and Tanzanians at large for their support to Zimbabwe during the liberation struggle, which went hand-in-hand with hosting freedom fighters and offering military training to soldiers, who later overthrew the minority rule in Zimbabwe,” he said.

He noted that another attribute for Tanzanians and Africans in general was his firmness on the distribution of land to the majority Zimbabweans from a few European farmers after failing to comply with the Lancaster agreement.

Another UDSM lecture, Dr Damian Shumbusho, gave his views that the former Zimbabwean President remained to be among the strong patriotic African leaders, who had views of protecting the freedom of Africans by whatever means possible.

However, he pointed out that Mr Mugabe was also among the few African leaders, who wanted to see what had been started in the country, in terms of development projects, was continued by a patriotic successor.

“He impressed African to love and value what is theirs and was opposed to external forces’ interference with their freedom, which didn’t come at a silver plate, but through liberation struggles,” he said.

The good bilateral relationship between Tanzania and Zimbabwe has created an enabling environment for sharing academic disciplines between UDSM and Harare University students through education exchange programmes.

Not only that, recently President Magufuli agreed that Tanzania would be selling maize to Zimbabwe to cater for their food deficit and help Zimbabweans learn Kiswahili Language. Mugabe was born in Kutama, then Southern Rhodesia on February 21, 1924. He served as Prime Minister of Zimbabwe from 1980-1987 and then as President from 1987-2017.

He chaired the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) group from 1975-1980 and led its successor political party, Zanu–PF from 1980 to 2017.

The following are his academic degrees: Bachelor of Arts (History and English) (BA) degree from the University of Fort Hare (1951), Bachelor of Administration (BAdmin) from University of South Africa (Unisa), Bachelor of Education (BEd) from the University of South Africa (Unisa) and Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Economics from University of London (External Programme).

Others are Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from University of London (External Programme), Master of Laws (LLM) from University of London (External Programme), Master of Science (MSc) in Economics from University of London (External Programme).

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Author: JAMES KAMALA

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