In a written letter, Robert Mugabe, the nearly 40 year ruler of Zimbabwe, resigned from his presidency on Tuesday after being expelled from his party last week. The resignation comes one day after the deadline set by his political party, ZANU-PF, after they demanded he step down from his position in order to avoid beginning the process of impeachment.
Crowds of Zimbabweans roared through the streets with cheer after the letter was read out loud by the speaker of parliament. The military takeover that occurred last Wednesday was widely supported by the citizens of the country as President Mugabe’s popularity had sharply declined over the past 30 years. Although Mr.Mugabe has been the only leader that Zimbabwe has ever known since their independence from Britain, he has been highly suspected of abusing his position in a corrupted manner in order to maintain his power over the country. The now former President has been accused of a variety of failures during his presidency, such as the decline of the economy and infrastructure, refusing to give up power when an election was lost, as well as allegedly rigging another election in his favor by more than 70,000 votes.
The final straw that broke the parties back, the firing of the Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, escalated into emergency talks in order to determine how to deal with situation and failures as a country going forward. The final decision was to place the leader under house arrest until he resigned or was impeached. Mr. Mugabe did not meet his Monday deadline to resign which spread outrage and disgust through the country. He did make a speech Sunday night, however had left the country in wonder if would follow through on the request.
With President Mugabe behind them, Zimbabwe will now go into uncharted territory of new leadership. Mr. Mnangagwa, who fled the country last week after Mr. Mugabe removed him from office, will now succeed him in his presidency per the constitution. The new leader is expected to take over the position in a few upcoming days