HARARE - Social media went berserk yesterday after pictures and video footage of President Robert Mugabe’s fall on Wednesday were released on the Internet.
Although photojournalists who had managed to capture the fall at Harare International Airport were ordered to delete their prized pictures of the mortifying incident, dramatic images of the tumble still found their way on international news sites and social networks.
As a result, #Mugabefalls trended on twitter, with many users becoming creative with memes of the fall and giving the distinct impression that most of the Internet was laughing its lungs out at the president’s misfortune.
In South Africa, #Zimbabwe and #unclebob also trended in the top 10 of the country’s stories of the day as people poked fun at the frail nonagenarian.
Pic: The Telegraph
Many of the memes created from Mugabe’s tumble depicted him in funny situations, with some saying he had not fallen but was dancing Azonto, a popular Nigerian dance.
Others created their own bizarre contexts of what Mugabe was doing in the picture, with some depicting him kissing the ground just after his arrival from Ethiopia.
Many social media followers wrangled about whether it was in the spirit of “ubuntu” (humanity) to laugh at an elderly man’s mishap, while others justified the at times over-the-top pot-shots at Mugabe saying there was nothing sacred about him, as this allegedly exposed the folly of leaders staying in power for too long and keeping their health status secret while in public office.
In one photo-shopped picture of Mugabe, he was depicted playing against Harry Porter in a Quidditch match, on a broom stick.
In another, he is shown dancing to popular singer Beyonce’s Single Ladies song, as the front man in a YouTube video.
In another picture, the newly-installed African Union leader is depicted surfing and riding a wave.
Mugabe is also shown elsewhere together exuberantly with some young people.
In yet another photo-shopped picture, the Zimbabwean leader is shown running away from a baton-wielding cop, while in another he is depicted running away from a rhino.
Other pictures show the president dancing with the stars, and on the race track with super short distance runner Usain Bolt.
In other posts, he is depicted striking a karate stance, and on the soccer pitch playing football.