Exclusive: Tsvangirai speaks out on illness

MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai and his wife Elizabeth relaxing at their Highlands home in Harare yesterday

MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai yesterday broke his silence over speculation about his ill-health, saying he was recovering from home and not in “a mortuary somewhere” as “wished by his political foes”.


Tsvangirai spoke amid drama as officials at the Trauma Centre and Hospital in Harare where he had been admitted reported him to the police for “sneaking out” without settling his hospital bill amounting to $2 600.

The hospital authorities also suspended a nurse who had helped “sneak Tsvangirai out” through the exit to the launderette around 11am as the ex-Premier, accompanied by his wife Elizabeth Macheka, sought to evade hordes of people – including State security agents and journalists – who had camped at the hospital.

Some hospital staff indicated that the drama over the non-payment of the hospital bill was stage-managed as Macheka had indicated that she was taking her husband home and would be back to settle all bills.

Tsvangirai was reportedly set to be released today, but it was not clear why he had opted to be discharged a day earlier.

It is understood hospital authorities rushed to report Tsvangirai at nearby Avondale Police Station, but by the time they finished making the report, they got a call from the hospital to the effect that the bill had been settled three hours after he moved out, forcing the hospital to withdraw the charges.

An Avondale policeman had to rush to the hospital to secure evidence that indeed Tsvangirai had settled the bill.

“A lady who accompanied Tsvangirai’s wife Elizabeth said they wanted to get him to rest at home and promised to return to make the payment after 30 minutes. But an hour after he left, hospital officials decided to report him to the police and suspend the nurse who helped him ‘sneak out’,” the source said.

Speaking to NewsDay hours after his release from hospital, Tsvangirai – who was relaxing with his wife at the couple’s Highlands mansion – said he was bound to fall sick like any other human being.

MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai  and his wife Elizabeth relaxing at their Highlands home in Harare yesterday
MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai and his wife Elizabeth relaxing at their Highlands home in Harare yesterday

“People thought I was in a mortuary somewhere. Who said I shouldn’t get sick? As if there is someone who ordered that thou shall not get sick?”

His wife chipped in telling journalists that her husband was well and relaxing, putting to rest speculation that he was critically ill and detained in a hospital.

When the NewsDay crew arrived, Tsvangirai was watching television while Macheka sat next to him going through some newspapers.

Tsvangirai was reportedly hospitalised at the private hospital on Sunday. But his aides maintained that he was only visiting the doctor to receive treatment for an undisclosed ailment.

The main opposition leader failed to attend an MDC-T Africa Day rally at Zimbabwe in Grounds, Highfield, Harare, on the same day, with senior party officials saying his doctor had instructed him to take a break.

It was the way that Tsvangirai allegedly sneaked out of the hospital that angered hospital authorities leaving hordes of suspected State security agents and journalists milling around at the reception of the upmarket private hospital.

A spokesperson for the hospital, who refused to be named, said in a dramatic way Tsvangirai, who was heavily guarded, left the hospital at 11am using the back exit without the knowledge of the front office.

The official claimed Tsvangirai left before settling his bill, despite earlier communication with him that services should be paid for before leaving.

“He left through the exit to the laundry at the back of the hospital without the knowledge of the front office,” the official said.

“We started phoning them and one of his family or party members immediately came to settle the bill.”

NewsDay could not establish Tsvangirai’s ailment, but there was speculation that he was suffering from either stress, malaria or a nervous breakdown.

The former firebrand trade unionist is fighting for his political skin against a group of his ex-lieutenants led by secretary-general Tendai Biti and former deputy treasurer-general Elton Mangoma who were calling for his ouster from the apex of the opposition party.

Tsvangirai’s spokesperson Luke Tamborinyoka said: “We see no reason to mislead the nation on [MDC-T] President Tsvangirai’s state of health and we have been open about his condition since this last weekend. More importantly, unlike other political leaders who fly out to upmarket hospitals outside the country for medical treatment, President Tsvangirai has exhibited faith in local medical expertise and health facilities.” This was in apparent reference to President Robert Mugabe’s regular visits to Singapore reportedly for a routine eye check-up.


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    • ndookunyangarika kwataiita pachigandanga panguva iya. security yaivepo ndeyechimahobho i think.
      afterall he;s not a threat to the state at all. why waste resources like that.this is ademocratic state vakomana. mobva mada kuziva zvose kuti sei nhingi aita manyoka.ndanyara ini.

    • Remember the state securities once waited for Tsvangira at the Harare airport and he outwitted them by landing at a private air strip. kkkkkkkkkk Drama chaiyo

  1. wonzwa zbc ichiti tsvangirai ava kufa, yobva yoti atiza kubhara bill rechipatara, woona futi kuti biti na ncube votofa ne aids, apa sata anzi ava kufa futi ku Zambia,uye j banda ava kurambira maresults achiti akarigwa na mugabe, wotoona kuti Mugabe wacho haachaoni maziso ose woshaya kuti zvinhu zvacho zvirikumbofamba sei

    • Kkkkkikikikikiiki! Regai kutityora mbabvu nekuseka kani! Munozondirapisawo here amuna woye, kkkkkk. MaZimba makaoma chokwadi

    • Nhasi zvaipa nokuti ndimukoma Morgan varwara. Ko pamunombopublisher kuti Mugabe arwara muchizviita dambe munofunga kuti imi hamurwarewo? Hapana munhu ari indispensable saka ngatitorei munhu wose semunhu kwete kunakirwa nekutuka vamwe. Zvinonzi nevanhu vechiNyanja, “Chaona munzako chapita mawa chiri paiwe”. Ngatizvibatei nokuti mangwana ndiwe kana ini.

  2. As always.Morgan is a back door guy.He wanted to lead this country from back door thru sanctions.He divorced Karimatsenga within days of his marriage whilst mbobing macheka ne back door.Now wasvova chipatara ne back door.What a leader?Plus kunyepa kwake na Ruka Tamboyenyoka…brandaya.

    • KKkkkkkkkkkKKKkekekeke……hanzi haana kuenda ku Singa-pore, anoenda neiko achitadza kubhadhara $2000+ muno? Ko, mukadzi akadini kuibhadhara immediately b4 atora murume? Manyepo badzi kudhifenda nemadzvinyu ieo ari pachena mumushana!!! KKKKkkkkloudest!

  3. state security agent at hospital! Save kwavakumberi, munokwatisa hana dzevazhinji , vanotodawo kuziva kuti murikuzvifambisa se?nemiwo vepachipatara munatwo, nenguva yamanga mamhanya kumapurisa to make news.dai zvaita tatangidza mwedzi uno, vanakidza! kikkkkkkkk

  4. The hospital is very unprofessional and stinking.How could they rush to report such an issue.I used to go to visit this hospital but now i see what type of hospital it is.Very barbaric

    • True this hospital stinks and has dented its reputation in other countries such tyoe of a hospital would be shunned by many people, and that suspended nurse must sue for unfair suspension and unfair labour practice. A person of Tsvangirayi (yes like him or not but he is known) cannot run away from settling a bill, and why did the have all those people all over the hospital ingawani Amai vaivadzinga ku Singapore kure uko. Just a call and the bill was settled yet they had reported at a Police Station and the Police laughed had to come to prove he had paid, no that is not police work when the hospital has withdrawn they have already made arrangements. But both the hospital and the police have an egg in the face.Very unprofessional hospital.

      • In every org there is due diligence which must be followed by employees. Failure to abide but by employer code of practice leads to dismissal. Who would employ a nurse who smuggles patients out of hospital?

        • Mboko you sound very intellect.I agree with you kwete just to be politically brain washed like what is exhibited here by MDC supporters.

  5. ko vanopinda pachena muchipatara varambireyi macamera, nhasi ndimorgan saka macamera anzvengwa hanzi back door nonsense

  6. What is all the hullabaloo about state security agents? The bottom line here is Tsvancry is now insane, and the insane supporters won”t realize it. Musangano haungambotungamirirwi nebenzi, ko kuzoti nyika, shayai kokupengera machinja . Mutikwanire, munhu ratova dhunyazi iro. face inotaura yega, kikiki.

  7. @Peter.very true.chipatara chinopindira munyaya dzenyika, vangani vakabuda vasina kubhadhara mabills, vakazobhadhara pave paye,inga hatina kuvanzwa.shame on you!

  8. we know u left right and centre.vakazotuma vechipatara kuti vaise report ndivakaita kuti paite suspension.munonyadzisq mazimbabwe.y morgan y.

    apa zanu yakahwinha maelections kusouth.ikahwinha kumalawi.ichachahwinha kuegpt nekubotswana so.

    all ur trick akuzivikanwa manje but thus time munokuruzwa seminyemba.munoda kuuraya muri mwari here?

    kuchasvika zuva rekutongwa pasisina zanu wamira wega.kuti jesu anouya hadzisi ngano.nyaya chaiyo muchaiona.regai titi hameno gore rino rikapera mushe.

    mafirakureva…………… chirikuuyawo kwenyu.

    • @Tinohwina Chete, Vakoma musatiparidzira Gospel yakatiita varanda vomuchena, tikatengeswa semombe, tikashandiswa semhuka (muzita raJesu!!) Kana akauya tinoda kuziva why? Asasvikira kuMasvingo, asauya kuChikwizi, tatambura nenhamo, malaria ne zhara iye akanyarara, zvanzi tichazofara kudenga. Apa akamborega mvura ichitora misha yedu…Bodozve, garai naye kwenyu.

    • Ko ipo patichatongwa timire toga MDC-T inenge iripo here nokuti mose makauraya. Kuda kuzviita vatsvene imi murimi mhondi dzacho.

    • @Jongwe Rachemebra, its not that he has the confidence in the local health system, but its the state of his mind which would make it a security risk to board an air liner. Mapenzi hakwire ndege
      unless varadzwa.

  9. I am dismayed at what politics has done to our moral fabric as a nation, tingafara zvikuru kunzwa kuti nhingi agwara? Cant we separate journalistic hype from humane conscience? Imi mose murikupururudza hamugwari? Have we allowed media polarity to tune our thinking to a point where leaders are not human beings who deserve our compassion and empathy sezvatinoziva muhunhu whedu….away from politics.We have reduced fellow human beings to objects of derision. Hee poison, hee ndi Macheka…hee Biti na Prof vagwara…hee VaMugabe .. Zvakambobva kupi izvozvo? Ndasvoda vakomana.

  10. Kkkkkk, @Reason benzi ndiwe because you don’t know how powerful is Mogiza that’s why state security agents were loitering like flies at the hospital, vanga vatotumwa naMugabe nemhuka dzake kuti go and find out if our big problem is still exist kana afa tell me l will retire with an immediate effect. To their surprise the man (Mogiza) still breathtaking and the cio got outsmarted by the man they call a teaboy that’s why they forced the authorities to report to the police. kkkkkkk Zanu pf is a party of Jokes now l see and believe they are pathetic and insane. Chinja maitiro, Maitiro chinja, nekoko bwaaa 1 time wayawaya.

  11. Saka chinonakidza chii kuti nhingi agwara? Why reduce fellow human beings to objects of derision when we should sympathise. Hunhu whedu takaisa kupi? Ndiyani asingagwari? Ya Macheka siyai yakadaro, kwako kumba zvirikovo.

  12. I am happy that Tsvangirai recovered very well. They started speculating false rumors. Only to discover that he paid the hospital bills as promised.
    As if their tired oldest civil servant in world is in good health. Please haters leave our President alone.

  13. Regai tiende kuAsia. Hospitals used to be knopwn for discretion. Media attention iri serious apa. Even in Singapore hakuna zvakadaro. If a customer hasn’t paid a bill in less than 24 hrs yanga yatosvika ku Police. Guys! This hospital is embarassing. And this is a cash paying customer paying 2600. Is that how you treat him? Next time haauye. Too many people outwitted here. And you thought you knew! Unobva washaya kuti…waibata?

  14. We pray for you tsvangirai Please God Let this Great man recover quickly, Please God put your hand above him and protect him from all evils.Please give him wisdom to prosper and be there by 2018 to stand against ZANU and Muagabe,Amen

  15. @reason yu are a fool because baba chatunga is busy concentrating on his health instead of pressing national issues kupenga kune basa rei nemi revive the ecomomy which is on free falling moggy kips on going strong

  16. For the days Morgan was at hospital cio were running this hospital . If someone fails to settle bills you sue the person which means bringing the individual before the courts of law you do not report to police. He is very lucky otherwise poison would have administered on him by these security morons but i think mdc intelligence did a good job here by removing Morgan before the stipulated date big up!!!!

  17. It’s called stress – there’s only so much the human body can take. Failed in politics. Must retire. Clueless.

  18. masecurity agent ndisu takati save vabude neback door because tinomuda. kuva muhurumende ibasa chete. we are solemly behind Dr R M Tsvangirayi. we don’t want zvose zvirikuitika kuma herald nekuzbc tv and radios. iyo iproperganda chete asi isu tinoziva zvatirikuita mumoyo. vamwe vakange vari pagate isu tange tatoenda nasave kare.

  19. ko ka ma security agents aida kurapwa pfungwa just like this fool called reason.saka tsvangson is a big man fo sho.NHUNZI HAITENDERERE PASINA HWEMA.get well soon save.

  20. I cant imagine journalist taking photos of a sick Mugabe like they did to a sick Morgan you remember a week ago Grace was furious about cameramen who took pictures of her husband entering a cancer hospital in singapore. This is a plus for Morgan clearly the guy is more matured than mugabe.

  21. Every man shall stand before God, wakabatei panyika, wakauya kuzotambudza ,nekuuraya
    that is not God’s wish therefore repent before its dusk
    our prayers, thoughts are always with you Father Save

  22. is there anything chinoshamisa kuti morgan arwara iko kuine dzimwe ndonda dzisingagare munyika seeking treatment overseas.bttr uyu haaana mari yenyika yaapedza ko vamwe avo vanotuka vachena asi votevera kuti vabatsirwe navo.bullshit to hell with yo dirty comments

  23. @ Musona yes stress because he loves this country and its people whose economy is dying every minute that is what is giving him stress and even smith if he was alive would have had stress to see the economy he soundly built vandalised to ashes . More so Morgan has not killed any zimbabwean. no not at all..

    • @Dibulaanyika, Tinyararire, Tsvangirai “loves this country…nonsense!! when it was time to sacrifice his life navamwe AKATIZA, he said so himself. Sorry about his health but he is not my kind of hero.

  24. god knws that w zimbabweans w love morgan,ur insulty thy a at no value at all,gud 4nthing,even u,u wil get sick.tsvangirai and mugabe thy a humn being lik us,admit tht presdent mugabe,must give chances 2othrs,tsvangira w a bhind u our presdent.plz by logic try 2express ur views nt insult!

  25. ma ONE arikurwara zve 2600 usd. Chirwere chikuru tajaira zve40usd nemushonga. Get well soon I hope you and Biti learn not to laugh at others sickness.

  26. By public demand tomorrow news day must up date its readers about Mugabe .s health .we have heard about Morgan and even seen his picture resting at home with his wife.Now your readers want to know what is happening across town since the old guy came from singapore where he was treated people do not know how he is responding to treatments.

  27. Vakuru vanoti seka urema wafa, in the past it was about Mdara nhari zviri kwauri and am sure now you know how if feels kuti even uka kosora vanoto taura chete.

  28. We have seen Morgan he looks relaxed and recovered he is fit no doubt about it . But the question is now about achimwene matibili is he ok ?

  29. I am not a Tsvangirai fan, but why did the hospital rush to report the matter to police, when there are hospital bills that have been unpaid for years. What was so urgent about Tsvangirai’s bill. Surely the hospital had contact details for their patient, did it not make sense to just call and find out what time the payment was coming?

    Tsvangirai is our former prime minister and is a prominent figure in this country, did the hospital really believe that he would disappear with their money to a place they would never find him? When have police assumed the role of debt collectors? Most of us have outstanding bills somewhere, but police have nothing to do with this.

    I do not go along with people who wish Tsvangirai ill, or Mugaboe ill, or anyone else ill. If you wish someone bad, kunonzi kuroya.

  30. Kikikki,when dydimus mutasa got sick,job wiwa sikhala said it was becoz of viagra,mugabe it is now a hym that he is no more,takanyarara hedu,nhasi tsvangirai ave murwere ndopamakuziva kuti kunorwariwa,munotaurisa,mati madii machinja..kikikiki

  31. this is Evil imi! vanhu vanoshandiswa nemweya yetsvina zveshuwa vamwe varwere vatosara vasina anoattender dza kunoreporter Save saka paHospital pacho hapana mapurisa. ndosaka vanhu vachingofa saka dzvene nderipi rawawana. hispital yese kumira vanhu vachitaura zvisina maturo.

  32. Morgan munhu sesu tose,kufa kana kurarama hazvisi by choice,asi kune vanenge vasara the struggle to put food on the table continues.Ndipo pane nyaya ipapo nokuti Zanu inenge ichiti haulume,ma factory ne ma mines ichivhara baba Chatunga vachikwira ndege vachiburuka vachikwira imwe futi,yaaa!

  33. Asi mogani urikuja namambo mupfana
    ndaona pikitya yamukadzi wako, haunolala hope chaidzo uripadivi ramukadzi uyu

  34. ini ndatoshaya kuti zviri kumbofamba sei?nhai wechipatara zvamakaenda kumapurisa, maida kuti murwere asungwe okandwa mumacells ozofira imomo akushaya mishonga?kana muchiti haabude asina kubhadhara, ko paanoramba arimo mari inenge ichitowanda, saka munozozvifambisa sei?

  35. The unprofessionalism of the hospital,this whole drama was planned.Why did the state security,state jonournalists want.The importance of Save is seen through your fears.Yesterday you were saying he is finished but now you send these agents after him why ? If he is finished then leave him alone.Cunningly you were outwitted by Save’s securities. VIVA SAVE munotonga chete,vanokukwatai pose pamunofamba. Musadzoka futi pachipatara ichi ndeche ZANU PF vanozokubayai injection yekuuraya.

  36. zvino nurse uyu mukangomuti basa rapera munenge matomupinza machena.nyaya yake takuiziva kwayabva.

  37. i listened to the zbc report and read the herald report on the alleged failure by tsvangirai to pay the hospital bill and there is invariably paucity of research in both stories. thats shallow if not gutter journalism at its worst.for starters the two media houses should have tried to find out why tsvangirai used the back door to leave the hosiptal, information they could easily have got from his spokesman Luke. they could even have spoken to the hospital authorities to find out if tsvangirai had made any payment arrangement, information they could easily have got. ndiro basa remasources to give media houses information not for them to write speculative opinions which they dish out as news.

  38. DIOS ES GRANDE. GOD IS GREAT. President Tsvangirayi should give glory to God. God heals, God is powerful, God is miraculous. IN DEO SPERAMUS.

  39. @ Don wezhira is idiots like you who have been lied to by zanu that a particular group of people liberated this country, where were you during the war? some of us were here in the country we never ran away to be refuges in some countries. We were at the front line without guns fighting. Every zimbabwean did some thing to liberate this country by either giving food to those who were armed or information about the where about of the enemy. but i know it not your problem you were lied to at borde gezi camps.

  40. yohwe yohwe ndiye oga arwara here…ko uya uya haana akarwara paindependence maziso kupupira asi hatina kuzviona munewspaper wani

  41. Ko kanoiwanepi mari morgan T iko kakakudwa mabhunu ndokubva aramwa uchadyiwa nehonye u chifamba

  42. @reason surely yu do not reason at all, yu think yo bob achaigona yadai kuenda kumawere iyi? Dai waive mumwe wabatsira mukweguru uyu kt nyika iite zvakanaka izvozvi civil servant richigere kuikhora kuze kube nini bantu bakiti

  43. Tsvangirai is a big man in zimbababwe politics no wonder why all people make news of him;Ane bhora ndiye anomakwa;big up save wakasiya vanhu vakagarira guyo sembwa tingati munhu aenda kubasa here kumirira kubuda kwemunhu muchipatara,

  44. I pray for the sick amongst us. Be they in hospital, at home or elsewhere ” Lord God protect and heal the sick. In the name of the Father, the Son and the holy spirit, I thank you Lord.

  45. Don’t go mhando dzezvipatara zvakadai mhani uno baiwa poison yejekiseni .Hona wanga wokokoredzerwa mhondi idzo.

  46. President Mugabe goes to Singapore, because if he goes to a local hospital zvaitwa Tsvangirai ndizvo zvaanoitwa nevamwe vanhu muno muZimbabwe. Tsvangirai is being treated like a criminal. Chero dai ndine mari ndiiendawo kuSingapore. Vanhu vepi vasina kudzidza vasingakwanisi kuchenguta confidentiality. Kana President Mugabe makarapwa muzvipatara zvemuno vanoswera vapiwa zvirwere zvavasina nevanhu veZimbabwe.
    Tsvangirai muchenjere kuisirwa poison kana kupiwa wrong medication. It seems some of these hospitals want you dead. CHENJERAI SAVE.

  47. Surprisingly Morgan & RG are close friends whilst you are busy exchanging hate speech. Bob called after hearing this in the press akatoti “save murikunzwa sei?

    • @Doc T , zvikanzi na save zidhoma zva biti namangoma zhakaoma mudhara, njeve jili kungolila idzi, ndashaya kuti zilikumbofamba sei.

  48. tsvangirai will neva go back to tht hospital its zanu pf owned, rega Bob vachizviendera zvavo kunze kwenyika. How can journalists and state security wait ouside while Morgan was being treated, he smelled the rat thts why he disappeared.

  49. .the print media is now fighting a bitter war against the Peoples Movement, the MDC T…..we the grassroots supporters will not be swayed by those vicious and frivolous accusations and counter false statements about our dear leader in order to weaken the cause…..but of course all is a bunch of horse manure…….this kind of news quickly vanishes as we move foward to change in this country…….ZANU PF is now bereft of new ideas to stimulate this dying economy, the thing is, all eyes are being swayed away from this state of affairs to cheap politicking ……..the once, popular paper The Newsday has also joined in this bandwagon of deception…….day in and day out they write negative headlines……… people in Zimbabwe have been reduced to poverty by this regime which continue to loot our national resources like demented hyenas…….Tsvangirai is the man of which this country looks up to from now and the future.

  50. I really wish we could have imwe Gukurahundi and rid our nation of imbwa dze MDC….when it is Mugabe hanzi Grace is disgraceful coz she does not want pics ne intursion but when it is Tsvangidog zvakanaka kuti munhu abude ne mu laundry room???????????? How many Zim people can LEAVE a hospital without paying a bill just by pomising to come bek??? Futsek mhani people…..when it barks like a dog it can not be a snake

  51. I think Morgan’s intention was not to doge paying hospital bills, but was running away from paparazzis and journalists. Haana kumbofunga kuti zvichadai. Intelligence dzake dzakamurasisa.

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