Transitional government takes shape
Publish date: 11 September 2017
Issue Number: 742
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
In January, a photograph appeared in Zimbabwe’s media showing Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa holding a novelty mug emblazoned with the words: ‘I'M THE BOSS.’ To supporters of President Robert Mugabe, the inscription bordered on treason. However, politicians, diplomats and a trove of hundreds of documents from inside Zimbabwe’s Central Intelligence Organisation, believe Mnangagwa and other political players have been positioning themselves for the day Mugabe either steps down or dies. A report on the EWN site notes that the documents and sources say Mnangagwa, a 73-year-old lawyer and long-standing ally of Mugabe, envisages cooperating with MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai to lead a transitional government for five years with the tacit backing of some of Zimbabwe’s military and the UK.
Mugabe yesterday (Sunday) said he will not nominate his wife as his successor as he addressed his troubled relationship with Mnangagwa. The Standard reports that Mugabe told thousands of his supporters at Bindura's Chipadze Stadium that nominating his wife would be a violation of the Zanu-PF constitution. However, this contradicted the First Lady who earlier emphasised that the 93-year-old leader had a right to hand-pick a successor. Last month, Grace demanded that he select a successor as Zanu-PF infighting reaches frightening levels. 'I will never do that, never,' he said yesterday. 'The party leader will be chosen by the people at congress and as a lawyer, I will respect that.' Mugabe also warned Mnangagwa not to try to oust him.