Robert Mugabe says the people of Zimbabwe and the governing ZANU-PF party see no viable alternative for the elections in 2018 general.
“They want me to stand for elections, they want me to stand for elections everywhere in the party…the majority of the people feel that there is no replacement, successor who to them is acceptable, as acceptable as I am,” Mugabe said in comments to state media ahead of his 93rd birthday this week.
Run as a corpse
Born in February 1924 at the Kutama Mission village in Southern Rhodesia’s Zvimba District, Robert Mugabe has ruled in Zimbabwe since independence in 1980.
The president is now 93-years-of-age and in nearly four decades he has inflicted unprecedented damage on his country, formally the bread basket of Africa.
The one time teacher, revolutionary and political prisoner is running again in the 2018 Zimbabwean presidential election.
Such is the desire to hold on to power that Grace Mugabe, his wife since 1996, said if Mugabe dies before the vote he should run “as a corpse.”
“If God decides to take him, then we would rather field him as a corpse,” she told thousands of cheering supporters at a rally in Buhera in eastern Zimbabwe.
It is all part of the plan.
In 2013 Mugabe signed into to law a new constitution, which limits the president to two terms. The clause limiting presidential terms will not apply retrospectively, so the Zanu-PF leader can take full advantage.
His health is clearly failing and his mind is not as sharp as it once was.
Last autumn Mugabe was on a flight, ostensibly bound for Asia, when it changed course and headed to Dubai speculation about his well being went off the scale and when he returned to Harare he joked that he had died and been resurrected.
If only the same could be said for the Zimbabwean economy.
The ill-fated participation in the war in the Democratic Republic of Congo between 1998 to 2002 set the scene for the catastrophe, which led on to hyperinflation, in 2008 the country faced 231 million percent inflation, in 2009 the country’s currency was suspended.
Zimbabwe uses the US dollar as tender, but the South African Rand, Botswana Pula, Sterling and the Euro can be used.
Cash is so hard to come by that civil servants, police and military, are seldom paid on time and the economy has fled underground.
Hence the birth of the “bond notes,” the world’s newest currency that is not officially a currency.
Once again the country is facing mounting inflation and the brand spanking new bond notes are going the way of Zimbabwean dollar.
If Grace Mugabe’s words come to pass a dead president will preside over a dead economy.