God unconvinced by would-be successors of Mugabe – Grace

2015-08-14 16:32
Grace Mugabe. (File: AP)

Grace Mugabe. (File: AP)

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Cape Town – Zimbabwe's First Lady Grace Mugabe reportedly told a crowd at a function in Binga, Matabeleland north province,  that God was not convinced by the calibre of would-be successors of her nonagenarian husband President Robert Mugabe - the reason why he continued to lead the country.

Grace insinuated that Mugabe continued to labour in office at the age of 91 because God wanted him to.

Mugabe has led Zimbabwe since independence in 1980.

His party has already endorsed him to stand in the 2018 presidential elections, when he will be 94.

"Just ask yourself why God continues giving a 91-year-old strength to lead the country. Where have you ever seen a 91-year-old who can stand for 2 hours?," New Zimbabwe.com quoted the first lady as saying.

Grace’s remarks came in the wake of factionalism which continues to rock the ruling Zanu-PF party, as many position themselves to succeed the veteran leader when he finally leaves office.

'Mental case'

Grace, 50, warned that those who were too keen to take up Mugabe's job should not forget ousted former vice president Joice Mujuru's demise "too quickly".

"This is what destroyed Mujuru. Do not be caught off-side. Tamba nevamwe zvakanaka (play safe)," Grace said.

Mujuru, Zimbabwe’s first-ever female vice president, was fired last year over allegations of corruption and plotting to eliminate Mugabe. Many of her allies in government were also fired and expelled from Zanu-PF.

Mujuru denied the allegations.

Reports indicated that the first lady led a campaign to discredit Mujuru ahead of a ruling party congress in December.

Grace, according to the state-owned Herald newspaper, admitted that people took her for "a mental case", but her warnings always came to pass, she said.

In remarks that seemed to be aimed at Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, Grace said that acting as president in his absence did not mean one was heir apparent. She added that there were some who had been canvassing for grassroots support since 2013.

Grace entered into mainstream politics last year after she was confirmed as the women's league boss in the ruling Zanu-PF politburo.

Read more on:    zanu-pf  |  grace mugabe  |  emmerson mnangagwa  |  joice mujuru  |  robert mugabe  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa

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