In his traditional interviews granted to ZTV every February to mark his birthday, President Mugabe this year said he was sticking on to the leadership of his party and therefore country because he was afraid his party would disintegrate due to factional fissures that have been growing deeper by the day.
The Oracle by Tangai Chipangura
He also confirmed that, even at the age of 90, he did not want anyone to discuss his retirement or succession because it was not yet due — that he was still around and not going anywhere!
Mugabe said: “But why should it [succession] be discussed when it’s not due? Is it due? Well, the leadership still exists that runs the country. In other words, I am still there. The people can discuss it if they want, but the moment they start discussing it, they are going into factions and then you find the party dividing itself, and so why dividing, why discuss it when it’s not due?
“When the day comes and I retire, that’s sure, the day will come. What I don’t want is, I don’t want to leave my party in tatters; I want to leave it intact.”
With these words coming from his mouth, little doubt remains that Mugabe entertains the idea of being Life President — of dying in office. The message he sends is that he has the desire and ambition to stay in power and his excuse is that the situation in Zanu PF and Zimbabwe has become so bad it is only him that can save the country.
Watching and listening to him speak — relating how Americans and Europeans fear and hide away from him each time they see him, “because of the power that you have invested in me” — you cannot doubt the man’s strength and determination.
It is evident the President is brimming with ambition to take the throne to the grave.
Of course, the excuses advanced for the permanent occupancy of the throne are just the typical platefuls of bull that we eat up from our politicians day in and day out.
Just as almost all those eagle-eyed politicians would have us believe that none of them harbour Presidential ambitions — that they are all there for nothing but to be the people’s servants — we know all that is lies and that virtually all of them have keen ambition to one day become President!
While in other countries political power (inter or intra party) is exchanged after a few years, politicians in Zanu PF all pretend that they actually do not want the apex seat in the party and country yet, behind the scenes vicious fights amongst this cowardly lot rage night and day.
They are all simply too cowardly to stand up and challenge for the top post which each of them long for.
But then again, Mugabe’s intimidating utterances about there being “no vacancy” for his post and about “succession debates not due” do not help matters. Those men and women whom Zanu PF renegade, the diminutive firebrand Margret Dongo once described as Mugabe’s wives, are then thrown into dark corners of silence or into a bootlicking frenzy.
Nonetheless Zanu PF politicians must know that it is absurd for them to deny they want power — such denials are just red meat on the platter.
In any case, it would also be absurd for us to believe their denials. After all, there is virtually nothing wrong or criminal or disrespectful or immoral about being an ambitious politician.
What is interesting however is that, while they may publicly castigate those “accused” of seeking to grab the throne from Mugabe, there are certain politicians whose inadvertent speeches and or actions have betrayed their presidential ambitions.
So, surrounded by fearful comrades, most of whom have in fact been scrambling to idolise him and make him an infallible demigod, Mugabe is tempted to make himself Life President, or to create a Mugabe dynasty in Zimbabwe.
Already, the President has declared that everyone, including the usually exempted members of the presidium, is going to have to fight for their positions at the coming December congress. There are only two exceptions — only two people that cannot be challenged — Mugabe and his wife Grace.
Mugabe and his wife have conveniently been endorsed in their positions of party President and Women’s League Secretary.
But for the distant observer, it just does not look exactly clean, innocent, moral, decent or prissy that everybody but the leader and his wife must face challenges for their positions — that only the leader and his wife must not be challenged!
In the circumstances, the possibility of the creation of a Gu-Shung-Ho dynasty becomes difficult to discount — given the overwhelming authority of the President.
Now that the First Lady, Grace Mugabe’s official title becomes: The First Lady, Comrade Secretary for Women’s Affairs, Dr. Grace Mugabe — the Sky is the Limit!