Dogged opposition leader and former prime minister in the government of national unity, Morgan Tsvangirai, is recuperating in a Johannesburg hospital after undergoing a medical operation on Wednesday.
There were suggestions that Tsvangirai, 64, had been diagnosed with stomach cancer leading to Wednesday’s procedure that was carried out by a leading gastric cancer expert at the Johannesburg hospital.
Zimpapers political editor tweeted, “Before Tsvangirai dies… It is understood that opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai is suffering from stomach cancer and only has a couple of years to live. One good thing he must do before he joins his ancestors is to call for the removal of sanctions he begged America, Britain and their allies to impose on the innocent people of Zimbabwe… #Ngaaenehake.”
Well-placed sources said Tsvangirai and his family had decided on the surgery on the advice of a panel of doctors, following a magnetic resonance-imaging scan and a subsequent biopsy last week.
Tsvangirai’s medical condition took centre stage in Parliament yesterday during a debate on the president’s speech when Zengeza East MDC MP, Alexei Musundire, criticised Mugabe and his family for shunning local health facilities – including his daughter Bona’s recent decision to give birth overseas.
But furious Zanu PF legislators fired back pointing out that Tsvangirai was also allegedly shunning local health facilities, as examplified by his operation in South Africa.
MDC secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora confirmed to the Daily News yesterday that Tsvangirai was recovering well in the South African hospital where he had the medical procedure after recently being taken ill.
“On the advice of his doctors, he had to travel to South Africa for treatment where he successfully underwent a medical procedure and is recuperating well. We are happy that our president is recovering well and we wish him a speedy recovery.
“We kindly request the nation and the party to give the president and his family the necessary space and privacy as he recovers. The nation and the media will be kept updated,” Mwonzora said.