PM goes for OP

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Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has left the country for South Africa to undergo an unspecified operation.

Tsvangirai’s spokesperson James Maridadi said: “Yes I can confirm the Prime Minister is in South Africa right now.”

“He is undergoing some surgery, but it is not a major operation. It just a minor surgical procedure which is not life- threatening.

“I am not able to give you details of the nature of the operation as that would be violating the PM’s privacy.”

“That (the operation) is something personal which we should all respect. What is important is that the operation is minor and not life-threatening,” Maridadi said.

Tsvangirai was expected to return home today.

While Maridadi was tight- lipped on the nature of the procedures Tsvangirai was undergoing, sources inside the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party said the surgery was linked to injuries he sustained in election violence.

Tsvangirai was nearly killed during assaults by police officers while in detention at Highfields police station on March 11 2007.

The prime minister was attacked when he attempted to address a prayer meeting which President Robert Mugabe had banned.

When he was finally released, after several days without treatment, Tsvangirai had sustained head and face injuries.

Tsvangirai also had scars all over the body caused by sjambok beatings.

Another MDC source said the prime minister had suffered a broken nose during the beating.

The source would not say why it had taken more than two years to have the fracture detected and corrected.

Tsvangirai was also involved in a road accident, which claimed the life of his wife a year ago.

This has also led to speculation that he may have sought treatment for injuries he sustained in the horror crash.

It was not clear when the prime minister would return to work.