Zimbabwe Opposition Leader Tsvangirai "Critically Ill"

Morgan Tsvangirai

Morgan Tsvangirai

During Mr Tsvangirai's political struggle against ex-President Robert Mugabe, he has been imprisoned several times.

The 65-year-old former prime minister, who has dedicated his adult life to trying to oppose Robert Mugabe's tyrannous regime, is suffering weight loss, exhaustion and muscle thinning, family sources said.

Zimbabwe's main opposition leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, is critically ill in a South African hospital and his supporters should "brace for the worst".

Zimbabwe's ailing opposition MDC-T leader President Morgan Tsvangirai on Wednesday appointed one of his deputies, 40-year-old Nelson Chamisa, as acting party president.

What is known about Tsvangirai's condition?

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"Of course I have cancer and not feeling too well but I am stable and the process is under control", Tsvangirai said in a post on twitter, adding that "I am recovering".

The MDC leader left for South Africa on January 5 for routine check-up.

After Mugabe was eased out of power, new president Emmerson Mnangagwa met with the opposition leader at his residence.

He had lost appetite and had difficulty eating or swallowing fluids, the sources said. "Nelson Chamisa as the acting president of the party by operation of the constitution until the President's return", said Tsvagirai's spokesperson, Luke Tamborinyoka in a Facebook post.

Mr Tsvangirai's illness has divided the MDC, with a number of party officials reportedly jockeying to succeed the former trade union activist.

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