Grace forcing Mugabe to stay – Tsvangirai

2013-07-25 11:34
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace. (File, AFP)

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace. (File, AFP)

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Cape Town – President Robert Mugabe's "arrogance" and refusal to leave power is as a result of his marriage to a much younger wife, who dictates the pace, forcing him to soldier on despite his advanced age, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said on Wednesday.

Mugabe wedded his former secretary Grace, 40 years his junior, in 1996.

According to News Day, Tsvangirai who was addressing a rally in Chikomba also said Mugabe confided in him that he was reluctant to leave power for fear of plunging his Zanu-PF party into chaos.

"SADC told him to come up with a new constitution to build the economy and health, and that if these issues are addressed, we go for elections - but he is arrogant and you never know whether it is inborn or old age," Tsvangirai said.

"I asked him why he was not retiring yet he was falling asleep as he talks? He [Mugabe] said he wanted to rest, but the problem was if he left, Zanu-PF would be doomed and dead. The problem is that if you take a young wife she will be insisting and pushing you and you cannot resist that. That is the problem, but the important thing is that this time let us give him a pension."

Loose morals

Tsvangirai's sentiments come just a few days after Grace launched a scathing attack on him, saying he was not worth any normal person’s vote in the upcoming elections.

Grace said Tsvangirai courted over 100 women before he settled for his customary wife Elizabeth Macheka and was therefore not a worthy leader.

"In these days of HIV/Aids, we have a grown up man like Tsvangirai moving around sleeping with every woman he comes across on the pretext that he is choosing a partner, how can we have a leader of loose morals like that? He is not principled," she said.

Zimbabwe is set to go for elections on 31 July to end a shaky coalition government formed in 2009 following disputed polls the previous year.

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