A look at Mugabe's 37 years in power

HARARE - February 21, 1924 – Robert Mugabe is born

1960 – Mugabe joins the National Democratic Party and after it was banned in September, he formed the group; Zimbabwe African Peoples Union (Zapu), which was led by Joshua Nkomo.

1963 – He left Zapu and formed the Zimbabwe African National Union (Zanu), established on the basis of Africanist philosophies of the Pan Africanist Congress in South Africa. Both Zanu and Zapu were officially banned on August 26, 1964 after a long spell of political unrest. It was during this time that Mugabe was arrested and imprisoned indeterminately.

1974 – While still in confinement, he was elected, under the influence of Edgar Tekere, to take over Zanu. The same year, he was released from prison along with other separatist leaders, so that he could go to a conference in Lusaka, Zambia.

1979 – The British colonies agreed to observe the switch to black majority rule and the UN raised sanctions. The subsequent year, Southern Rhodesia gained independence from the British and became the independent Republic of Zimbabwe.

1980 – Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF party wins independence elections. He takes office as Prime Minister on April 18.

1982 – Mugabe deploys North Korea-trained troops to crush rebellion by ex-Zapu guerrillas. Government forces are accused of killing thousands of civilians.

1987 – Mugabe and Zapu’s Joshua Nkomo sign a Unity Accord, leading to the integration of PF-Zapu and Zanu PF.

1990 – Zanu PF and Mugabe win parliamentary and presidential elections.

1998 - An economic crisis marked by high interest rates and inflation provokes riots and increasing support for the Zimbabwean Congress of Trade Unions led by Morgan Tsvangirai.

1999 – The opposition MDC is formed and Tsvangirai is appointed leader in 1999.

2000 – Thousands of independence war veterans and their allies, backed by the government, seize white-owned farms, saying the land was illegally appropriated by white settlers.

2002 – Mugabe wins election against Tsvangirai. Observers condemn the poll as flawed and unfair.

2005 – Zanu PF wins parliamentary election, giving it the majority it needs to change the Constitution.

2008 – Parliamentary election results show Zanu PF losing its majority for the first time. MDC says Tsvangirai also won the presidential election and calls on Mugabe to concede.

Run-off goes ahead despite calls for a postponement as violence mounts. Mugabe is declared the winner with over 85 percent after Tsvangirai pulls out. Economy is crushed by hyperinflation, reaching billions of percent, due to what analysts blame on Mugabe’s mismanagement. Negotiators from the MDC and Zanu PF hold talks to end the deadlock over Mugabe’s re-election, eventually reaching a power-sharing deal in September.

2009 – Tsvangirai is sworn in as prime minister by Mugabe.

2012 – Saviour Kasukuwere, Zimbabwe’s Empowerment minister says he expects to finalise the transfer of majority stakes in foreign mining companies to local blacks by the end of April.

2013 January – Talks involving Mugabe and Prime Minister Tsvangirai reach a deal over a new draft constitution.

2013 March – New Constitution approved by an overwhelming majority in a referendum. Future presidents will be limited to two five-year terms.

2013 July – Presidential and parliamentary elections. Mugabe gains a seventh term in office and his Zanu PF party gets three-quarters of the seats in Parliament. The opposition MDC dismisses the polls as a fraud.

2013 August – The United States responds to calls from southern African leaders for the West to lift all sanctions on Zimbabwe by saying that it will not do this unless there are further political reforms in the country.

2013 September – The MDC boycotts the opening of Parliament presided over by Mugabe in protest at what it says was a rigged election.

2014 February – Zimbabwe marks Mugabe’s 90th birthday after he returns from medical treatment in Singapore.

2014 August – Grace Mugabe, the president’s wife and a political novice, is unexpectedly nominated as the next leader of the governing Zanu PF’s women’s league, fuelling speculation that she may succeed her husband one day.

2014 December – Mugabe sacks vice president Joice Mujuru and seven other ministers after accusing them of being involved in a plot to kill him. Mujuru denies the allegation, but is later expelled from the Zanu PF party.

2015 January – Mugabe is chosen as chairperson of the African Union for the year.

2015 June – Central bank formally phases out the Zimbabwe dollar, formalising the multi-currency system introduced to counter hyper-inflation.

2016 August – Police disperse demonstrators near Parliament with placards reading “President Mugabe must go”. Days earlier the war veterans’ association withdrew support for Mugabe.

2016 November – A new national currency — called bond notes — is introduced amid public resistance.

2017 April – Two leading opposition figures form an alliance to contest next year’s general election. Tsvangirai signed the agreement with former vice-president Mujuru of the National People’s Party.

2017 August – Grace is accused of assaulting a woman in a hotel in neighbouring South Africa, where she is given diplomatic immunity.

2017 September – The activist pastor Evan Mawarire, who became popular with his #ThisFlag movement that challenged the government over the economic crisis, is charged with inciting a crowd to violence.

2017 November – Brigadier General Sibusiso Moyo announces on TV that the military is taking over but says the intervention should not be seen as a coup. Days later Mugabe addresses the nation saying he is still president.

2017 November, 21 – Mugabe resigns, National Assembly speaker Jacob Mudenda announces as a joint sitting of Parliament begins debating impeachment motion. — BBC/Reuters

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