Zimbabwe president hails late opposition hero Morgan Tsvangirai


Zimbabwe's president Sunday visited the home of deceased opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai to pay condolences to his family and to urge unity as power struggles within the opposition have heightened tensions. After violence from party youth, they abandoned plans for their own parallel meeting at Tsvangirai's home.

Party faithful converged on a square in downtown Harare on Monday to bid farewell to a man whose career was defined by his rivalry with long-time president Robert Mugabe, who was ousted in November.

Tsvangirai's MDC-T party appears fractured by rivalry over who will take over leadership.

He had beaten long-time ruler Mugabe in the first round of presidential elections that year, narrowly coming short of garnering enough votes to be declared the victor.

Thousands of people in Zimbabwe have paid tribute to Morgan Tsvangirai at a rally in Harare.

Now Mnangagwa, Mugabe's longtime ally, is in charge and is reaching out to the global community after years of sanctions over alleged human rights abuses and rigged elections, hoping to bring in badly needed foreign investment to revive a collapsing economy.

All three vice presidents of the MDC are present, amid a tussle over who will now lead the party as the country braces for elections in July.

The government has said it will give him a state-assisted burial despite being a former Prime Minister of the country. "Comrades, you are allowing power to get in the way of reason and dignity", tweeted Alex Magaisa, a law lecturer at Kent University in Britain and former adviser to Tsvangirai. "We will always remember him".