A British publication IHS Jane’s Intelligence Review says President Robert may not be able to contest next year’s elections because there is a high risk that he will die or become incapacitated before the elections.
It says if Mugabe has not implemented a succession plan before then, it is likely that there will be a destabilising internal battle within the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front party.
Mugabe was endorsed as the ZANU-PF presidential candidate for next year’s elections at the party annual conference in Masvingo last month and was again endorsed by the provinces this week.
The Insider was not able to get more details about Mugabe’s fate because the full story is open only to subscribers but two factions G40 and Lacoste are fighting to position themselves in the succession battle.
Lacoste is allegedly behind Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa while there appears to be no clear leader for G40, though the faction is allegedly pushing First Lady Grace Mugabe to take over.
Former Vice-President Joice Mujuru, however, said Mugabe was the real leader of G40.
The story entitled: Factional politics threaten Zimbabwe's stability says an opposition victory or a contested poll that leads to a form of a unity government are likely.
Several stories predicting Mugabe’s death have been published over the past decade.
Former central bank governor Gideon Gono, who was said to be Mugabe’s personal banker, told United States ambassador to Zimbabwe James McGee on 4 June 2008 that Mugabe had prostrate cancer that had metastasized and, according to doctors, would cause his death in three to five years.
Gono said Mugabe's doctor had recommended that he cut back on his activities and Mugabe had told the doctor that he would step down after the elections.
A relatively unknown Zimbabwean prophet PatrickMugadza has even dared give Mugabe's date of death- 17 October this year.
Though there have been several reports of Mugabe flying to Singapore to see his doctors, Mugabe is still alive and kicking though frail at 93 next month.
Mugabe himself joked at his 88 birthday: “The day will come when I will become sick. As of now I am fit as a fiddle. I have died many times. That’s where I have beaten Christ. Christ died once and resurrected once. I have died and resurrected and I don’t know how many times I will die and resurrect.”
Ed: See my take on why Mugabe has survived up to now