File photo taken on Jan. 5, 2018 shows that Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa (R) meets with the Movement for Democratic Change-Tsvangirai (MDC-T) leader and former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai (C) at Tsvangirai's home in Harare, Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe's main opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, who has been battling colon cancer, died at a South African hospital on Feb. 14, 2018. (Xinhua/Wanda)
HARARE, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- Zimbabwe's main opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, who has been battling colon cancer, died at a South African hospital Wednesday.
A message posted by one of his deputies in the MDC-T party Elias Mudzuri confirmed his death.
Tsvangirai announced in 2016 that he had been diagnosed with colon cancer and had been in and out of hospital for some time.
"It is sad for me to announce that we have lost our icon and fighter for democracy," Mudzuri said.
A former trade unionist, Tsvangirai had been the face of Zimbabwean opposition politics since 2009.
He became prime minister in an inclusive government led by former President Robert Mugabe in 2009 following disputed elections the previous year.
He had been chosen by the broader MDC Alliance to be the coalition's presidential candidate in elections slated for 2018.