In November, Mnangagwa said Mugabe was no longer able to walk and had been admitted to a hospital in Singapore, without saying what treatment Mugabe had been undergoing.
Officials often said he was being treated for a cataract, denying frequent private media reports that claimed he had prostate cancer.
On leading Zimbabwe to independence from Britain, Mugabe was feted as an African liberation hero and champion of racial reconciliation.
But as his decades-long rule persisted, many at home and abroad denounced him as an autocrat, willing to rig elections and affect the economy in his pursuit of control.
Al Jazeera takes a look at some of the key moments of Mugabe’s life.