Major blow for Mugabe

HARARE - In a major blow to former president Robert Mugabe and his followers, it has emerged that the high-level African Union (AU) mission that met with him at his palatial Borrowdale mansion last week did not take him seriously when he moaned to them that he was being ill-treated by President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration.

Well-placed sources told the Daily News yesterday that the mission, led by the chairperson of the AU Commission Moussa Faki Mahammat, was “scornful” of Mugabe’s complaints to them — a sentiment that they immediately conveyed to senior government officials soon after their meeting with the 94-year-old.

Mugabe had apparently hoped to solicit sympathy from the AU and provoke “a storm of outrage” in Zimbabwe and on the continent after he complained bitterly to the visiting delegation about not being treated well by the government, as well as allegedly not receiving some of his five-star retirement benefits.

Tellingly, Mahammat told reporters soon after meeting Mugabe that the nonagenarian was happy with the way he was being treated by Mnangagwa’s government — effectively “pooh-poohing” Zimbabwe’s former long-ruling leader’s complains.

Among other people, last week’s Blue Roof meeting is said to have been attended by Mugabe’s wife Grace, AU Political Affairs Commissioner Minata Samate Cessouma, Zanu PF secretary for administration Obert Mpofu, chief secretary in the Office of the President and Cabinet Misheck Sibanda, and Zimbabwe’s former ambassador to Namibia Chipo Zindoga.

Two sources who spoke to the Daily News yesterday said Mahammat had met with Mnangagwa soon after his courtesy call on Mugabe — a meeting that was also attended by Vice President Kembo Mohadi, Foreign Affairs minister Retired Lieutenant-General Sibusiso Moyo, Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa, as well as Mpofu and Sibanda.

It was in this meeting that Mahammat had apparently made it clear that he did not think much of Mugabe’s complaints — saying scathingly that the nonagenarian had made “selfish arguments” that indicated that he only cared for his own welfare and was not interested in the well-being of the nation at large.

Asked for a comment and why Mugabe had complained of ill-treatment and being denied some of his retirement benefits, presidential spokesperson George Charamba told the Daily News yesterday that he couldn’t “comment on leaked information because I don’t know if it’s authentic in the first place”.

But one of the authoritative sources who spoke to this newspaper said it was also clear that “Mugabe’s moans” to the AU had been influenced by Grace, who had apparently become “a very negative influence” on her doddering husband.

“Interestingly, pavakapedza kuita macomplaints avo iwawo, he turned to mukadzi wacho akati 'ndataura zvose here?' ... saka hapana anozvitora serious zvaari kutaura ... ndopolitics dziripo apa (When Mugabe finished his address to the AU mission he inquired with Grace if he had left out anything ... this is why no one is taking him seriously ... That’s the politics here),” the senior government official said.

The other source also claimed that former Cabinet minister Jonathan Moyo was “part of this silly plot” to try and get Sadc and the AU to intervene in Zimbabwe.

“If you talk to vakuru varipo iye zvino (Mnangagwa), vanotaura kuti kana amai (Grace) vasipo, tinonyatsonzwisisana zvakanaka and you can see idea yacho it was to raise maissues, leak the material kunana Jonathan, so as to bolster the petition to AU. Amai ndovaka leaker information yemacomplaints.

(The new administration knows that if they engage Mugabe without Grace, they always come to an understanding with him. The idea to leak details of that meeting was to bolster the G40s’ petition to the AU. We know it is Grace who leaked details of that meeting).

The first source also told the Daily News that Mahmmat had allegedly told Mnangagwa that Mugabe’s demeanour in their meeting had reminded him of an unwell Habib Bourguiba — who was Tunisia’s leader from independence in 1956 to 1987.

Bourguiba was removed from power after he became too mentally incapacitated to carry out his duties, in what was known as a “medical coup d’état”.

Mahmmat reportedly told Mnangagwa: “What I heard from President Mugabe reminded me of Bourguiba”.

“Saka ukaona mukuru achimuka achipfeka svutu (So, if you see Mugabe waking up every morning wearing a suit) and behaving as if he is a sitting president, you can see kuti pane (there is a) problem ye (of) adjustment,” the first source said — completely rubbishing the complaints by Mugabe that he was not being well taken care of.

“You also need to ask what he (Mugabe) left in the coffers. Even macivil servants anga asingawani mari yavo when it was due. Mapensioners anga achienda months on end asina mari (when Mugabe was in power, civil servants and pensioners weren’t being paid on time). Suddenly, he is one of them and he is realising how painful it is to keep a pensioner unpaid.

“Hausi kuona here kuti (Can’t you see) that’s a very selfish argument and that’s exactly what the AU guy also said,” the insider said.

“Presentation yevakuru ava yanga ichingoti I, I, I, you know. Hapana paanga achimbotaura nezvenyika bodo. It was just mawelfare issues avo (Mugabe’s presentation was only about himself and his welfare, and not once did he mention the country and fellow citizens).

“Meanwhile, that whole place, that huge mansion of his is running efficiently on the basis of State resources. And you complain about pension yawanga usingapi vamwe who were entitled to it, and vanga vari mumaconditions anga ari worse than ako.

“So really, it’s a combination of old age, and a bit of greediness on the part of amai vari kupusher murume wavo.

“And do you know the interesting thing is, they were throwing a lavish party ye birthday ... ndozvinoita vanhu vasina mari yepension ivavo, huh. Come on!

“Can’t you see the whole thing is not adding up?” the top official said, adding however that he hoped Mnangagwa would exercise restraint in dealing with Mugabe.

“I just hope vanoita moyo murefu. Kana munhu ava pa age iyoyo aine mukadzi who is irresponsible munotozvidzora ndimi mega. Otherwise, they will lose each other and it will be very bad.

“So really, veku AU just dismissed the whole thing and everything about him (Mugabe) ... I mean, the State is battling to make sure kuti it functions like a normal state, where people are paid on time ... and we are there already ... So, what’s so special about him (Mugabe) when he is living off the State like that? You should also not forget kuti ndiye akaita create ma circumstances where things are this parlous, handiti?”

Comments (10)

rhobhati must neva expect to be taken seriously by anyone, let alone his erstwhile cdes! he is one hell of a guy who neva took anyone seriosly despite the obvious nid to giv an ear to the suffering masses! he better kip quiet!

SaManyika Chaiye - 26 February 2018

Nemivo veDaily News mungarambamangoti nangananga nako kamudhara aka. Hamuoni here kuti rangove bhachi chete,chidhoma zvacho chakanga chakarogwa naGire kutonga from a grave on Mt Heroes Acre. Makanzwa kachitiiko Giresii anogara chema nguva dzose nokuti chitopwani hachisiri kuzotonga Zimbabwe from the little hill close to Warren Park. Zvanzi kanagaramuimba panesecurity isingaiti. Yeyi ? hapana kana one muZimbo angati akasangana nako angakapedzisa. Instead tiri kukanzvira tsitsi kuti zuva rako rasvika pakudoka risati rabuda. Ya-a a few may spit on him if they meet him but that is all,nothing else.

Masamba Asiyana - Cremora - 26 February 2018

Robbie shld keep quite that's the way he was treating the citizens of this country poor as they are and kune vanhu vasina kana pekurara vaatsvinyira apa angora mumansion yatiri kubhadhara isu matax payer. Ngaadzikame pfungwa dzazara mvura.

Kedu - 26 February 2018

Robert should shut up. Now he suddenly understands that not getting paid is a challenge? He lives lavishly, still has medical benefits etc while the rest of Zimbabweans are going hungry and are scattered all over the world because of his sh!+hole policies.

Jomo - 26 February 2018

I wonder why AU would take the oldman seriously considering the fact that over the years, opposition parties and rights groups have been raising complaints which the AU and SADC have never responded to.The same Robert and his lapdogs Jonathan etal would rubbish such complaints and they now want to be listened to themselves.For sure vakuru vaiziva vakati "dindingwe rinonaka richakweva rimwe, kana rokwehwa roti mavara azara ivhu".

Tahir Iqbal - 26 February 2018

Mugabe is just trying to prove utterly wrong those who spend the last few decaades arguing kuti MUGABE CHAIYE ARI RIGHT, MA MINISTER AKE NDIWO AKAIPA...LOL.

rafy - 26 February 2018

There must be a total blackout for Mugabe. He made the whole region suffer because of his mismanagement of the state. Do you think if Mugabe was a Director of a company like Delta he would last even an hour in that position. Let us forget about this oldman. MAReporter pllease stop it!!!!! Dont give him space at all, together with his Gire.

Mukanya - 27 February 2018

We pray the Lord Almighty God strengthens and guides our new current President ED and his dispensation.Wuth God everything is possible.RG.is history let's stop worrying about him.His time was...and is gone.He is being pushed to barble by sister Gire who is still imagining herself ruliing this country to ruins.A big SORRY to her ngasiye sejuru vazorore.vakwegura kani.Lets give ED a chance and stop murmurring won fellow Zimbabweans.Christians let's pray for our beloved country the more.We leave all to God.Mbuya Gire imbo nyarai kani.and spend time watching your interesting Videos ..pa the so called interface rallies.tatenda

Johnson Moyo - 27 February 2018

We pray the Lord Almighty God strengthens and guides our new current President ED and his dispensation.Wuth God everything is possible.RG.is history let's stop worrying about him.His time was...and is gone.He is being pushed to barble by sister Gire who is still imagining herself ruliing this country to ruins.A big SORRY to her ngasiye sejuru vazorore.vakwegura kani.Lets give ED a chance and stop murmurring won fellow Zimbabweans.Christians let's pray for our beloved country the more.We leave all to God.Mbuya Gire imbo nyarai kani.and spend time watching your interesting Videos ..pa the so called interface rallies.tatenda

Johnson Moyo - 27 February 2018

Fuck you mugabe and your bitch wife, why dont you just die. Die mother fucker die. I

Doink - 27 February 2018

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