Mugabe refuses to step down — Source

Robert_Mugabe
Robert Mugabe

Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe, his wife, Grace, and two key figures from her G40 political faction are under house arrest at Mr. Mugabe’s “Blue House” compound in Harare and are insisting the 93-year-old finishes his presidential term, a source said.

The G40 figures are cabinet ministers Jonathan Moyo and Saviour Kasukuwere, who fled to the compound after their homes were attacked by troops on Tuesday night’s coup, the source, who said he had spoken to people inside the compound, said.

Mr. Mugabe is insisting he remains Zimbabwe’s only legitimate ruler, an intelligence source said on Thursday.

The source said Mr. Mugabe is resisting mediation by a Catholic priest to allow the 93-year-old former guerrilla a graceful exit after a military coup.

The priest, Fidelis Mukonori, is acting as a middle-man between Mr. Mugabe and the generals, who seized power on Wednesday in a targeted operation against “criminals” in his entourage, a senior political source told Reuters.

The source could not provide details of the talks, which appear to be aimed at a smooth and bloodless transition after the departure of Mugabe, who has led Zimbabwe since independence in 1980.

Mr. Mugabe, still seen by many Africans as a liberation hero, is reviled in the West as a despot whose disastrous handling of the economy and willingness to resort to violence to maintain power destroyed one of Africa’s most promising states.

Zimbabwean intelligence reports seen by Reuters suggest that former security chief Emmerson Mnangagwa, who was ousted as vice-president this month, has been mapping out a post-Mugabe vision with the military and opposition for more than a year.

Fuelling speculation that that plan might be rolling into action, opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, who has been receiving cancer treatment in Britain and South Africa, returned to Harare late on Wednesday, his spokesman said.

South Africa said Mugabe had told President Jacob Zuma by telephone on Wednesday that he was confined to his home but was otherwise fine and the military said it was keeping him and his family, including wife Grace, safe.

Inspite of the lingering admiration for Mr. Mugabe, there is little public affection for 52-year-old Grace, a former government typist who started having an affair with Mr. Mugabe in the early 1990s as his first wife, Sally, was dying of cancer.

Dubbed “DisGrace” or “Gucci Grace” on account of her reputed love of shopping, she enjoyed a meteoric rise through the ranks of Mr. Mugabe’s ruling ZANU-PF in the last two years, culminating in Mnangagwa’s removal a week ago, a move seen as clearing the way for her to succeed her husband.

In contrast to the high political drama unfolding behind closed doors, the streets of the capital remained calm, with people going about their daily business, albeit under the watch of soldiers on armoured vehicles at strategic locations.

Whatever the final outcome, the events could signal a once-in-a-generation change for the former British colony, a regional breadbasket reduced to destitution by economic policies Mr. Mugabe’s critics have long blamed on him.


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  • thusspokez

    Mr. Mugabe is insisting he remains Zimbabwe’s only legitimate ruler, an intelligence source said on Thursday.

    The Zimbabwean military says that it is not a coup, so why shouldn’t he serve out his term?

  • shola

    “Mr. Mugabe, still seen by many Africans as a liberation hero, is reviled
    in the West as a despot whose disastrous handling of the economy and
    willingness to resort to violence to maintain power destroyed one of
    Africa’s most promising states.”
    What a career, from a freedom fighter to a dictator.

  • Mentus

    It is worth noting that there has not been any man-handling or bloodshed by the army in Zimbabwe. No group has gone on the rampage killing innocent people and setting structures on fire even though Mugabe has his supporters.
    I personally pray for amicable resolution of current stalemate.
    This is how civilisation works, and it is something for Buratai, Idris and other security chiefs to take note of.

    • Eluba Inas

      Different situations. Don’t compare apple and oranges.

  • Julius

    Who cares…leave him alone in his house issuing orders to himself.

    • AryLoyds

      Aboki , here you are again showing your stupldity as usual 🙂

      • Julius

        Faggot, I see you don’t know anything about sarcasm.. A 90+ years old man fighting to remain in power. Moron, you are the same fag that told the forum that Buhari was dead in the UK…right ?

  • Zeb

    At least Mugabe has not threatened to spill the blood of Zimbabweans on the streets of Harare, neither has he decided to set up his war tested militia or instigated or sponsor some of his foot soldiers to operate from the vast forests of North east Zimbabwwe as some so called ambitious politicians have done in some so called countries in Africa.

    • Eluba Inas

      Don’t count your chickens before they are hatched!

  • Dr Pat Kolawoole Awosan

    Zimbabwean national army commands must complete the reformation act and cleanse Zimbabwe public structure of any traces of the dictator,Robert Mugabe, who was in power for almost 40-years without any interruption.Zimbabwe, is now a nation of the ghost of its past as all civilize nations around the world now avoid Zimbabwe, because of Robert Mugabe,s hold on power like his family title.If Robert Mugabe, refuses to go,the army should detain him and keep him in a solitary-confinement..