Don’t expel me, I want to die in Zimbabwe — Mugabe

Robert Mugabe
Former President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe [Photo: BBC]

Zimbabwe’s former president, Robert Mugabe, who has insisted on staying on in his country, was granted immunity from prosecution, sources close to the negotiations said on Thursday.

According to Reuters, Mr. Mugabe was assured that his safety would be protected in his home country as part of a deal that led to his resignation.

Mr. Mugabe ruled Zimbabwe for close to four decades but stepped down on Tuesday after the army seized power and the ruling party turned against him.

Mr. Emmerson Mnangagwa, the former vice president, is set to be sworn in as president on Friday.

A government source said Mr. Mugabe, who is 93, told negotiators he wanted to die in Zimbabwe and had no plans to live in exile.

“It was very emotional for him and he was forceful about it,” said the source, who is not authorised to speak on the details of the negotiated settlement.

“For him, it was very important that he be guaranteed security to stay in the country…although that will not stop him from travelling abroad when he wants to or has to,” the source said.

Mr. Mugabe’s rapid downfall was triggered by a battle to succeed him that pitted Mr. Mnangagwa against Mr. Mugabe’s wife, Grace, and caught the attention of the nation’s military which subsequently intervened in a bloodless revolt.

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