Masire passed away in a hospital in Botswana’s capital, Gaborone, late on Thursday, according to his senior private secretary.
President Masire was one of Africa’s most respected elder statesmen, a gifted leader who made every effort to galvanize the region’s efforts towards peace, growth and development. In these uncertain times, Botswana will miss him but so will Africa and the world.
Masire led Botswana following president Seretse Khama’s death in 1980, and until voluntarily stepping down in 1998, having overseen a period of unprecedented economic growth. He is largely credited with being the architect of Botswana’s famed stability.
As well as mediating to end violence in Mozambique, where he was heavily involved in efforts to end violence between Mozambique’s government and the main opposition Renamo party, Masire helped to resolve political crises in Kenya and Lesotho after leaving office.
Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family today and always.
Photo credit: Botswana Unplugged