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Elections in Zimbabwe: Mugabe turns on Mnangagwa in a surprise pre-poll speech



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Media Caption Robert Mugabe refuses to support Emmerson Mnangagwa

Zimbabwe's ex-president Robert Mugabe held a surprise press conference on the eve of the election. [19659004] Mr. Mugabe said he would not support his successor in the Zanu-PF Party, Emmerson Mnangagwa, after being ousted by the "party I founded".

"I can not vote for those who have tormented me," he said. "I'll make my choice among the other 22 [candidates]."

Zimbabweans go to the polls on Monday in the first vote since Mr Mugabe was overthrown in November.

What did Mr. Mugabe say?

Speaking From his home in the capital Harare on Sunday, the former president once again said he had been "fired" in a military coup and left office to "avoid conflict".

He said he would now like to see the opposition Democratic Movement (MDC) leader Nelson Chamisa make a good choice on Monday

"He seems to be doing well, and if elected, I wish him everything Good "When asked by Fergal Keane of the BBC to bring Mr. Chamisa to power in Zimbabwe, Mr. Mugabe, 94, stated that he was the only candidate.

Mr. Mugabe said, "I hope the election tomorrow will throw away the military government and bring us back to the Constitution." Let the people's voice be tomorrow, never to say it again, should we have a time in the army is pushed a person to power.

image copyright
Reuters

Caption

Grace Mugabe accompanied her husband on Sunday in Harare

image copyright
Reuters

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Mr Mugabe said MDC leader Nelson Chamisa was the only viable candidate

Mr. Mugabe also denied that as President he had planned to give his leadership to his wife Grace, saying that this was "utter nonsense" and suggested that former Secretary of Defense Sydney Sekeramayi take the lead.

Mr Mugabe added that since he was forced out of office last year, "the people of Zimbabwe have not been free".


A New Zimbabwe

To Pumza Fihlani BBC News, Harare

Robert Mugabe has barely been seen or heard since his uncensored dismissal from the presidency last November. When the surprise press conference on Sunday is over, the former statesman has not forgiven those who have taken his Zimbabwe away from him.

Sometimes he looked frail, but his words were grueling. He spent much of his speech criticizing the current administration led by Emmerson Mnangagwa, who was once a close ally. He believes that President Mnangagwa's ascent to top job was illegitimate and unconstitutional.

Perhaps the strongest sign of her now-broken relationship was the revelation that he will not vote for Zanu-PF, the party he founded. Instead, he hinted that he would vote for MDC Alliance Chairman Nelson Chamisa.

But is Mugabe still important in Zimbabwe? In no way would he appreciate; It is overwhelming, especially for young people, that he has no connection with the challenges Zimbabweans face today. And while Zimbabwe owe its independence to Mr Mugabe, a new Zimbabwean awaits his birth, where he has no place.


What happens on Monday?

More than five million Zimbabweans are preparing to visit the polls for the first time in 38 years, without Mr. Mugabe being in power

They will participate in the presidential, parliamentary and municipal elections. There Are 23 Presidential Election Candidates

  • Video: Comedians Making Fun of Mugabe
  • History Behind Mugabe's Scarf

The conquered and impoverished country, which has decades of repressive rule, faces major economic challenges.

These include investment, education, health care and jobs ̵

1; estimates suggest that the unemployment rate in Zimbabwe is 90%.

Many Zimbabweans have left the country in search of work in South Africa [19659040] Media playback is not supported on your device

Media Signature Why Zimbabwe's election is historic

The country is expecting a high turnout on Monday, The youth vote is expected to set the tone Almost half of the registered persons are younger than 35 years old.

Who are the leaders?

The pioneers in overcoming these challenges are Zanu-PF's President Mnangagwa, 75, and MDC, Mr. Chamisa, 40.

President Mnangagwa, known as the "crocodile" for his political wisdom, has pledged to deliver jobs and is seen as open to economic reform.

He has survived several assassinations blamed on the followers of Mr. Mugabe.

  • The "crocodile" snatching back

Mr. Chamisa, who became a deputy at the age of 25, became Zimbabwe's youngest president.

He is known for his wit and humor and as a lawyer and attorney pastor his rallies and press conferences have picked up the excitement of a revivalist movement.

An opinion poll last week saw the MDC closing the gap with Zanu-PF from 11 percentage points to three, with 20% of voters undecided. It was only the second of two opinion polls.

  • The Crusader took Zimbabwe's "Crocodile"

election in numbers

  • 5,635,706 people have re-registered to a new voter role; the opposition still doubts its accuracy
  • 43.5% of registered voters are under 35
  • 10,985 polling stations
  • 16 years since election observation by EU and US observers


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