While millions will be hoping Robert Mugabe's death at the age of 95 may lift the oppressive shadow of corruption and tyranny that has hung over Zimbabwe for decades, this won't happen any time soon.
Since the ancient despot was ousted in a palace coup intended to stop him from placing his young wife, Grace, at the helm in November, 2017, things have gone from terrible to disastrous. The country is now in the grip of an intense drought; millions don't have access to safe drinking water let alone water to bathe or wash clothes in, and the economy is non-existent.
Mugabe's successor, his former right hand man and enforcer, Emmerson Mnangagwa, orchestrated the coup that ended the dynastic ambitions being harboured by the Mugabes. Renowned for the brutality with which he had put down any opposition to Mugabe's rule, Mnangagwa has stayed true to form.
When protests broke out after the new regime raised the price of petrol by 150 per cent in January this year, the new president reacted brutally.
Soldiers and thugs went door-to-door in Harare, seizing people at random and beating them. Scores were arrested. Twelve shooting deaths were reported and, in apparent bid to stop word of what was happening from spreading, the internet was shut down.
The only real benefit that is likely to accrue to the ordinary people from the one-time despot for life's long awaited demise is that it will, if only for a few moments, focus the world's attention on this forgotten country and its long suffering population.
The tragedy is that half a century ago it did not look as if things would have to go this way. Mugabe was a young activist campaigning against the odious and despotic apartheid regime presided over by Ian Smith.
Smith's government marked the culmination of one of the most ambitious exercises in free-enterprise colonialism of the modern era.
The country we now know as Zimbabwe was formerly Southern Rhodesia, the territory seized, settled and administered by the British South Africa Company under the direction of Cecil Rhodes from 1890 until the early 1920s.
Rhodes, an economic imperialist of the first water, had a keen eye for real estate. He was well aware the new territory held some of the richest mineral and diamond reserves and finest stretches of arable land in all of Africa.
The tragedy is that ever since the beginning of the colonial era these assets have never been managed for the benefit of the region's indigenous inhabitants.
This time a century ago they were being systematically plundered and exploited by the BSAC and the mainly English white settlers who came to share in the spoils. This population, which fought tooth and nail against any form of self-determination for the native Africans, gave rise to a pariah state which was only supported by white South Africa.
When Mugabe was proclaimed the first president of the newly declared state of Zimbabwe after the fall of the Smith regime in 1980 he was hailed as a liberator; the great leader who would introduce his people to a new era of peace and prosperity. That was not to be.
It quickly became apparent that he and his cronies in the ZANU-PF party were as bad as, if not worse, than what they had replaced.
When Mugabe, in turn, was overthrown just under two years ago people danced in the streets. They hoped against hope life might finally improve.
It didn't. Mugabe's death is unlikely to make things better either. That is going to take genuine regime change and massive international aid.