Robert Mugabe Tuesday resigned as President of Zimbabwe. Parliament Speaker Jacob Mudenda announced, bringing the curtain down on a 37-year reign.
Mugabe was swept from power as his autocratic rule crumbled within days of a military takeover.
“I Robert Gabriel Mugabe in terms of section 96 of the constitution of Zimbabwe hereby formally tender my resignation… with immediate effect,” said speaker Mudenda, reading the letter.
The bombshell news was delivered to a special joint session of parliament. Zimbabwean lawmakers had already convened to debate a motion to impeach Mugabe, who has dominated every aspect of Zimbabwean public life since independence in 1980.
His resignation was however greeted on the streets of the capital Harare, with car horns and wild cheering.
It is on record that when the military seized control, tens of thousands of Zimbabwean citizens took to the streets to demand the president go but the 93-year-old defiant Mugabe wrestled to remain in power.
Mugabe had ruled Zimbabwe almost unopposed since the country gained independence from Britain. His efforts to position his wife Grace as his successor triggered fury in the military that had underpinned his regime.