President Mugabe is a political gladiator paving the way for his wife Grace Mugabe to take over when he decides to step down, a leading opposition member has said.
According to Alex Magaisa, a former chief of staff of ex-Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, the 93-year-old Mugabe was still very much in charge of the Zanu-PF party.
“Mugabe controls Zanu-PF in every way possible… He may be 93 years old but is very much politically aware, [he’s] a gladiator, in control,” he told the BBC Newsday programme.
I believe he [Mugabe] is supportive of her ambitions... [otherwise] he would not have allowed her to get to where she is at the moment.
The latest political development in the southern African country has resulted in the firing of vice-president Emmerson Mnangagwa over disloyalty, disrespect and deceitfulness. But Magaisa described the move as “part of the plan to clear the path for her (Grace Mugabe). She hasn’t hidden her ambition.”
Zimbabwe’s powerful and controversial First Lady: Grace Mugabe https://t.co/qtISzOyXAi— africanews (@africanews) August 16, 2017
Reports suggest that there are plans to restore a legal position that says one of Mugabe’s two vice-presidents must be a woman. It was scrapped at a time that Mugabe sacked former vice-president Joice Mujuru.
“Because they wanted to get rid of Joice Mujuru… they removed a clause specifying that one of the two vice-presidents be a woman… now they are gunning for the restoration of that clause… to clear the path [for Grace Mugabe].”
Magaisa stated further that due to Mnangagwa’s growing profile as a presidential contender, it was no surprise that he was fired. More so because Mugabe by his actions supported the ambitions of his wife. Grace Mugabe is currently leader of the women’s wing of Zanu-PF.
“I believe he [Mugabe] is supportive of her ambitions… [otherwise] he would not have allowed her to get to where she is at the moment,” he added.
Zimbabweans head to the polls next year and the ruling party has endorsed Mugabe as its leader. Meanwhile, the opposition parties are planning a coalition in what is seen as a final push to retire Mugabe from politics. He has been president since independence.