Mugabe in weird Uhuru celebrations

HARARE - Former president Robert Mugabe marked Zimbabwe’s Independence Day celebrations surrounded by relatives and close allies at his majestic Borrowdale home on Wednesday, rebuffing President Emmerson Mnangagwa who officiated at the main ceremony held at the National Sports Stadium on the same day.

Mugabe, who has kept to his immaculate sense of dressing, declined an invitation sent to him by his successor on the basis that the current administration was in power “illegally” and therefore had no right to preside over the ceremony.

While some opposition parties, notably the MDC led by Nelson Chamisa, graced the occasion to mark the country’s 38th birthday, Mugabe — who presided over the country’s affairs for 37 years before the army removed him from power — would have none of it.

Instead, he chose to celebrate the historic day when he was installed as the country’s first black prime minister at his Blue Roof mansion, far from the madding crowd.

“He had a very small function held to commemorate Independence Day and he did so in the company of his family and allies. He had no reason to attend the celebrations held at the National Sports Stadium even though an invitation had been sent to him,” a source said.

Mugabe is on record saying he was forced to resign by the military which backed Mnangagwa.

He has so far scoffed at attempts by mediators sent by government to convince him to support his successor.

Political analysts told the Daily News yesterday that until Mnangagwa gets the mandate from the people in an election scheduled for this year, he will not be able to do much to convince Mugabe to support his administration.

Professor of world politics at the London School of Oriental Studies, Stephen Chan said for now, Mnangagwa finds his hands tied to deal with the stubborn Mugabe who still regards himself as the country’s president.

“At the age of 94 and with his legacy of economic stagnation, there can be no comeback. He has no political party that would support him, no army. Mnangagwa has it all. For that reason, Mnangagwa can just let the old man fret. As long as Mugabe does that, Mnangagwa knows the electorate will view him as the new president as the better choice,” said Chan.

Mugabe was removed from power in November last year and has told the world that he is being persecuted by his allies-turned foes.

He has refused to endorse the current administration and has warned that free and fair elections promised by Mnangagwa could be a pipe-dream unless if the army disengages from civilian matters.

Political analyst Maxwell Saungweme said Mugabe should accept that he no longer has power and move on than clinging to a past that was “ugly”.

“Mugabe is a stubborn nonagenarian who is full of himself and thinks he is the best person Zimbabwe has ever had. He sees himself as invincible, unmatched by anyone and he never wanted to be in a Zimbabwe where someone is president. He feels Mnangagwa is too junior to him and he will never recognise any other person as president until he dies.

“Time has moved on and he can’t make a political come back. The earlier he realises that Zimbabwe has better things to focus on than him, the better. Mnangagwa needs to do nothing with him...,” said Saungweme.

Academic and researcher MacDonald Lewanika said Mugabe did well by staying away from the Independence Day celebrations as that would have been tantamount to endorsing the people who dethroned him.

“I think . . . Mugabe is behaving normally, we have to remember that he was deposed and the executioners of his political death are the ones in charge of the State today. It is enough that they succeeded in toppling him, he doesn’t have to like it, and grace any occasions that affirm the new reality.

“At the end of the day, it is about leverage, and it seems the Mnangagwa regime do not have enough of it to force Mugabe to bless them and grace their occasions.

Mugabe, on the other hand, has the fact that he is alive and the regime wants to show Africa that he has not been harmed and is well as leverage against the regime.

“This will however, only last until ED gets a fresh mandate through a free and fair election — only then can he and his regime really afford to lose patience with Mugabe,” said Lewanika.

Comments (9)

One man celebration...kkk. We will also declare November the month of freedom. Freedom from Mugabe.

Tahir Iqbal - 21 April 2018

Because you are an EDiot

Sun Tzu - 21 April 2018

How can the fool sulk that he got removed illegally? Isn't this the same person who lost the election in 2008 and refused to go? Instead they cooked the books for weeks and pronounced a dubious runoff? ED and the Securocrats engineered it to safeguard their ill gotten wealth. All this talk about kuda nyika is bogus. They live their loot chete

Moe Syslack - 21 April 2018

Even if it were you, would you be foolish enough to attend the celebrations. He knew that anosvereredzwa nevanhu pavanongomuona. He wouldn't want to be embarrassed. Even the invitation was a mockery. Chaingovewo chirango kkkkkkkk

Yohwe - 22 April 2018

@Moe Syslack - it is rumoured that he had thrown in the towel but was prevented from leaving by leaders of this new old dispensation, who rigged the elections in his favour.

Sagitarr - 23 April 2018

Mugabe is wise

Bidzor - 23 April 2018

Mugabe is being given too much attention. He can celebrate whatever he wants - the day he destroyed the Zimbabwean economy, people became homeless, he looted, killed etc. We do not care - haasiri panyanga. No one cares about the goings on at the Blue Roof Old People's Home except the tenants. Ngavabudewo panze pane vamwe, kwete kumirira Independence Day!!!!!

Daniel 5 - 23 April 2018

Just give the old man a dummy to suck perhpas he can loanone from his grand child LOL!

Olq - 24 April 2018

Who cares about thugs fighting each other?

YIMI - 26 April 2018

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.