Mugabe successor

via Mugabe successor – DailyNews Live. 15 June 2014  by  Gift Phiri

HARARE – She began her career young as a guerrilla, and then rose through the ranks to become a member of President Robert Mugabe’s inner circle and now Zimbabwe’s new Constitution has come as a blessing to her in the faction-riddled Zanu PF.

The 59-year-old Vice President Joice Mujuru is in line to be the country’s interim leader if the 90-year-old Mugabe was to retire or is incapacitated before the party’s congress.

With Mugabe at an advanced age and plagued by natural physical challenges associated with such an age, the Zanu PF succession battle could reach its climax this year with the party’s explosive congress set for December.

Justice minister and shrewd political schemer, Emmerson Mnangagwa, is locked in a perpetual succession duel with Mujuru, and the Chirimanzu-Zibagwe MP has emerged as one of the leading contenders to take over from Mugabe, but the veteran Zanu PF leader has not named a successor and has recently ruled out both “contenders”.

But Mujuru has long been a high-profile face in Mugabe’s administration, serving as acting president each time the Zanu PF leader travels outside the country.

The big question is what actually happens to Zimbabwe if Mugabe decides to retire or is incapacitated?

Bryant Elliot, a leading constitutional law expert, pointed to an article in the new Zimbabwe Constitution that explains what should happen when a president retires or is incapacitated.

The Constitution addresses two scenarios directly relevant to the president in office.

If Mugabe were to leave office, retire or be incapacitated, Mujuru, according to the new Constitution, is supposed to complete Mugabe’s term as that is the position set out in Section 101 of the new supreme law.

However, Elliot said, for the first 10 years of the new Constitution, that provision is altered by the provisions of Section 14 of the Sixth Schedule and in particular sub-sections (4) and (5) as read with sub-section (1), the effect of which is that a substantive replacement to the office of the president must be made “within 90 days after the vacancy occurred…”

“It is only until the new president assumes office after the 90 days period that the vice president acts as president, not until the end of his term if he had survived,” Elliot explained.

“Also, there is the vague provision that the political party, which the previous president represented, nominates his replacement and that political party ‘must notify the Speaker of the nominee’s name…”

“This provision presupposes that the political party concerned speaks with one voice in agreeing who is to submit the name of the replacement to the Speaker and crucially who that replacement is.”

The import of this is that if Mugabe is incapacitated anytime soon, he must be immediately replaced by the last acting president.

And with Zimbabwe having only one vice president, it means Mujuru will take over for 90 days after which Zanu PF will nominate a president to complete Mugabe’s term.

Political analysts say that while Mnangagwa might use his political skills to win the ticket to replace the president at the end of 90 days, Mujuru would have possibly used Machiavelli tactics to whip his party into line so that they all support and nominate her.

That means, if nominated, which is likely, she will be the country’s leader until 2018.

But things might become complicated if Mugabe gets to the Zanu PF congress without retiring which means a second vice president ( Simon Khaya-Moyo looks likely) will be appointed.

This will mean that whoever will have been the last acting president between Mujuru and Khaya-Moyo will take over for the 90 days.

Many suspect however, that Mnangagwa, who is leader of government business in Parliament and a hardline Mugabe ally, may make a run for presidential nomination at party level, forcing Zanu PF into conflict with itself as is happening now.

If Mujuru chooses to contest in the 2018 election, it seems likely she would face opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, a charismatic political gladiator who received 34 percent of the vote when he competed against Mugabe, who garnered 61 percent of the vote in July last year.

If Mujuru temporarily assumes the presidency, analysts have said it is difficult to tell whether she will have what it takes to win at the 2018 polls but that will another issue.

They note that Mugabe’s political strength was largely fuelled by his ability to personally connect with throngs of dedicated followers.

And that personal connection with his supporters is “what’s held things together in Zimbabwe,” an analyst said.

Mugabe has in the past said he was not happy with both Mnangagwa and Mujuru taking over from him, meaning the veteran leader can pull a fast one at the congress and push his own personal choice outside the two.

Mugabe might then commandeer Zanu PF to support his candidate and this is where names like retired Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) governor Gideon Gono and Defence minister Sydney Sekeramayi come in.

Zanu PF factions have already expressed their jittery with Mugabe’s closeness to Gono following reports that the Zimbabwean President prefers the ex-RBZ governor to take over from him not only because they enjoy a close relationship but due to the fact that Gono is credited with keeping the country afloat during the economic crisis of 2008-9.

The worry is that without Mugabe’s cult of personality, Zimbabwean politics plunge into chaos.

In a country laden with widespread corruption, which has a powerful military, and links to murky diamond trade, this is especially scary.

Even before the last July election, there was widespread talk of an armed conflict if Mugabe was not elected, and the country has growing economic problems that any new leader may find impossible to handle.

After Mujuru’s elevation to the vice presidency in 2004, Mugabe said, “When you choose her as a vice president, you don’t want her to remain in that chair do you?” — a suggestion that Mujuru could be the next Zanu PF leader after Mugabe steps down.

Given the provisions of the new Constitution, observers say her path to the presidency was a fait accompli.

Born into a peasant family in Mount Darwin, where she resoundingly won a legislative poll last year squarely and fairly, Mujuru dropped out of school young and was aged 18 when she joined the liberation army. She rose through the guerrilla ranks to become a commander.

Her notoriety increased after she single-handedly shot down a Rhodesian army helicopter.

“I became very strong and learnt to make decisions and not wait for men to decide,” she said of her experience of war.

She joined Mugabe’s first post-independence Cabinet in 1980 at 25, and was one of the longest-serving government ministers before her elevation to the vice presidency in 2004.

Mujuru lives in Harare, but has a 3 500-acre requisitioned farm, Alamein, about 60km south of Harare where her husband Solomon’s remains were found after a mysterious fire in 2011.



  • comment-avatar
    Jrr56 10 years ago

    If is happens Zimbabwe will have another 30 years of hell.

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    John Thomas 10 years ago

    This newspaper is a ZANU mouthpiece.

    Mujuru is not fit to manage a public toilet

  • comment-avatar

    this is a tiresome subject. Neither should get the job. Joyce because she has the intelligence of an amoeba. There are those who will want her to take over so they can carry on their thieving under her big belly. Emerson is a horrid person…a dictator in the making.

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    kayi getmore 10 years ago

    aiwawo hapana apa lets try vamwe

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    sparks 10 years ago

    Mujuru is weak she will not manage to unite the different tribes from the country

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    Mlimo 10 years ago

    Mujuru started as a guerrilla, but has turned into a gorrilla

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    Mpranga 10 years ago

    They will remember Dr Simba Makoni

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    Insider 10 years ago

    Not only is she fat and ugly, she is increadibly stupid! Watch out for the crocodile, he is making his moves. If he wins, watch the mine shafts start filling!

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    itayi 10 years ago

    Run off the mill type of analysis that we are being subjected to here. It is lullaby type of exposition that total lacks depth and is way out of context. The facts are there so why then not delve into those facts and give us the real thing. I remember not long ago reading an analysis from the comments section on the Zimeye online publication by a one Gandhi that was richer in context than this simple and lazy analysis that lacks any creativity or real substance. In short the author of that debate was posing the question around the so called proverbial nine lives of the Emerson legend. It cast aspersion as to the real power behind zanupf by posing the question on how Emerson’s group was outsmarted during the post election period and ended up with only 1 out of the 10 provinces. I will reproduce it here for what it is worth.

    Gandhi on Sun, 8th Jun 2014 11:31 am

    Of Professors and Boardroom Coups
    Like Mobutu of Zaire, the Grandmaster has no sense whatsoever of the economy. If he happens to make mention of the economy then it is simply incidental to his abiding desire to return power for himself and himself alone. The Grandmaster only thinks politically. This obsession with power as the central issue in all efforts of moving Zimbabwe forward has this far eluded one of Zimbabwe’s most politically enlightened professors Musorobangu. The Grandmaster, like the master of Machiavellian intrigue he is, does not trust anybody and always treats everything with suspicion. This would appear as a straightforward issue. Tracing back into history though, from the time of Professor Yussuf Lule of Uganda it would appear that our most enlightened lot are often out of their depth when it comes to the intricacy of political scheming. Perhaps the call for dexterity of character that goes with this trade rarely aligns with the singular inclination that accompanies intellectual disposition. It would seem that like it was with professor Lule’s 68 day reign in the 70s so will it be in this case.
    From insinuations in the press Musorobangu’s suspected association with Father Ojukwu (FO)has been around for long now and investigations by the ‘notorious C10 have been launched. The C10 did not even need to hack FO’s account in order to confirm it. In intelligence circles is a method of flushing out suspects. Uncovered circuits are fed exclusive but carefully doctored information and when that information appears on the radar it serves to confirm the identity of the mole. Those who followed FO closely will recall the instance when a list of ‘serving’ members of the C10 was leaked on his website. It smelt of trap with a dual purpose; firstly, to confirm the status of the person that runs the website. Secondly, it was designed to expose the mole that leaked information.
    In fact the ‘leaked’ list was so defective that only an amateur would fall for it. It gave a significant number of people who had long since passed on like the late Big Bird, Attison Dudza and Time Ants, the latter who passed on in the 90s but who had been discharged from the service any way on account of his involvement in shoddy gold deals. Of course it also had names of serving operatives but who are well known to be in breach of professional etiquette requiring stealth and secrecy; the likes of Leopardheard and Dagger. A significant number of the names so ‘exposed’ included members of the close protection unit (CPU) and branch 5. There were very few, if at all any, on the ‘exposed’ list that serve in the nerve centre of the organisation. In short that is how the connection was long since established.
    Once a leak is detected then the next step is an assessment followed by covering the trial. It is the assessment that determines the extent of covering the trail. Presumably, like the will fox he is the Grandmaster had noticed something beneficial in those involved that he wanted delivered, for his selfish benefit, before he could commandeer his troops to descend on their scheming lot. Often those busted are requested to cooperate. Even under such circumstances it is a natural instinct that the busted often suppress their sixth sense warning of lurking danger, especially when the grass is green and the pastures are soft and sweet. We presume a brain wave that could turn the tables by stealing the election from underneath the noses of the opposition had visited the likes of Musorobangu and had earlier received the approval of the grandmaster.
    Engrossed by the fact that the idea had been ‘warmly’ received, we presume again here, that Musorobangu was aided to set up; equipped with computers and a staff complement of 50. Now housed in the serenity of Avondale Musorobangu would ‘diligently’ set off scheming away the permutations for the grand election theft. He would not end there. Instead he would go on to scheme his gambit on how thereafter he would wriggle out after the grand theft to force the Grandmaster out of office and forestall being pursued.
    Chess is a game of patience. With FO busted it was the Grandmaster instead who has to lie in wait. Now assured of his most coveted price, power retention, the Grandmaster never lets go his sixth sense and in anticipation proceeds full speed exerting all his energies on how to withstand the aftershock. Duly ‘rewarded’ for his grand scheme with a house boat, Musorobangu’s sixth sense now totally deserts him.
    As the game kicks off deliberately the Grandmaster loses the toss so that the amateur can have the confidence of the first move. The nation is gripped in shock in the wake of the grand theft and all fingers point at the Grandmaster as planned. But the Grandmaster has been washed squeaky clean by those laying the gambit.
    Now that the coveted price is delivered with a semblance of credibility the Grandmaster does not need to wait for the gambit. He moves to forestall it. In a shock counter manoeuvre he strikes. Like a bolt from the blues all the ground shifts and the balance of power shifts as 9 provinces out of 10 declare their allegiance to the Grandmaster, albeit his proxy. There is gnashing of teeth. This time around the Grandmaster heaves a sigh of relief but muttering to himself: the more educated they come the better. But a routed player is allowed time to ponder his counter options even when the gambit has been pre emptied and he is cornered.
    The plot was first to make nonagenarian a lame duck President through a grand theft and later reverse all the gains of economic stability that were associated with GNU as a way of fomenting dissent. The weapon for doing that is the indigenisation programme. Let indigenisation wreak havoc in the post-election period. On the second account force the Grandmaster out.
    What lessons can we draw from this sordid episode? The strategy; if you cannot beat them then join them is futile with authoritarian systems. Authoritarian systems prey on power hungry people and will eventually spit out potential threats like phlegm. To the Grandmaster you represent just an instrument, a snivelling ‘idiot’ of sorts that is dispensable. Perhaps, in retrospect the Grandmaster even rues his past association with the unsophisticated; Borders and Elliots. They represent filthy, leeches; a regrettable past. After all, they got the Grandmaster the wrong end of the stick as a pariah (suspended from the commonwealth protocols; nearly ejected from SADC etc). The Grandmaster is a creature of habit and the willing take turns only to be jettisoned into the dustbin of history in an inglorious manner. No sleep lost. How naive some of these professors!!
    You only win against entrenched authoritarian systems by dismantling them and not by reformation. The similarities between what is happening in the opposition and what is happening in the ruling party are not coincidental. It was its own version of the attempted boardroom coup on Tsvangi. In fact to all intents and purposes they were crafted from the same hand.’

    • comment-avatar
      roving ambassador. 10 years ago

      In reality, if people spend time plotting and counter plotting like this, surely there is no time for state work. The economy will sink further and further.
      But what I have always noticed in Zanu, The people vying for power tend to get themselves into ministries which do not need them to be in office;e.g., Defence and Justice or state security so they can monitor competitors.
      Carry on Zanu , Bump each other off

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    Mukanya 10 years ago

    The analysis is empty, the succession in the offing is a tragedy in the making for Zimbabwe. Lets prepare for more trips to that Garden of Rest located in the Warren Hills.

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    protestor 10 years ago

    I agree with the President noone is an obvious candidate we have to choose for ourselves