There was no coup in Zim… Mugabe 'submitted his resignation willingly', says AU

2017-12-23 11:00
Robert Mugabe (File: AFP)

Robert Mugabe (File: AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Harare - Zimbabwe’s dramatic ouster of Robert Mugabe last month was “not a coup” and did not break any of the African Union’s rules, a top official in the continental body says.

According to the AU’s peace and security commissioner, Smail Chergui, Mugabe “left with honour” and the process to remove him was “totally peaceful”.

Clean bill of health

“It was just a dialogue between the leadership of the country and the president and they convinced him that maybe some of the actions taken, including around him and his immediate surrounding, were not good for the country, and he accepted to submit his resignation willingly,” Chergui told Russia’s state-run Sputnik news site

The clean bill of health from Chergui is in contrast to that of AU chair, Alpha Conde, who slammed the Zimbabwe military operation as a “coup d’etat” and said the continental body would never accept it.

Speaking a day after the military seized the state broadcaster and sealed off government offices in Harare on November 15, Conde called for a return to constitutional order.

Double standards

But in his interview with Sputnik, Chergui was in no doubt about where the continental body stands now: “It’s not a coup according to African Union rules, because we are the one to declare if someone has made a coup and then apply sanctions,” he said.

“We are neither in a crisis in Zimbabwe nor in extraordinary situation,” the Algerian diplomat added.

Many Zimbabweans were relieved to see the back of Mugabe, but have been bemused at how the military operation – dubbed Restore Legacy - escaped international censure.

Reacting to Chergui’s remarks, media watchdog Zim Media Review said in a tweet: “Clear double standards by AU. It was a coup. They are just happy to get rid of Mugabe, but they set a bad precedent by their stance.”

Added @AbbieRuramai: “Wow…he (Chergui) is quite creative. I used to think any unconstitutional change in gvt amounted 2 a coup.”

Read more on:    au  |  robert mugabe  |  alpha conde  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.