In happier times, Mugabe, Mutsvangwa and his wife Monica
President Robert Mugabe yesterday said he will step down if Zimbabwe’s war veterans say so but he added that the final decision would have to be made by the party at its congress.
He told a rally at Bindura that he would meet the war veterans in the first week of April at a date to be announced because it appeared they had a lot of grievances to be resolved.
Mugabe said this would be a no-holds barred meeting where people should not be afraid to air their views.
He castigated war veterans who had gone astray like their present leader Christopher Mutsvangwa who was suspended from the party for three years but added:
“Hatidi matsvedzero erudzi irworwo saka ma war veterans huyai ku Harare muchapiwha date muna April svondo rekutanga tikurukurirane and hapana zvekutyanana tinenge tichiti taurai zvirikumoyo kwenyu . Kana maakuda kuti vatungamiri vabve, ini ndibve ndinobvaka kana madaro, zvauya nokuparty but zvinokubatsirai here iyezvino.”
(We don’t want that kind of wayward behaviour, so war veterans come to Harare. You will be give a date in the first week of April so that we can thrush out this issue. No one should be afraid to say what is at the bottom of their heart. If you want the leaders to go, I to go, I will go if you say so, it has come from the party, but what will this help at the moment?)
Mugabe said he could not be forced to step down now because this was the middle of his term, which ends in 2018.
“Pfungwa yacho ndeyekuti ahh, President vagarisa dai vabva. Ko kana ndichibva handiti takabva kumaelections, ko takaenderei kumaelections, takaenda kumaelections kuti ndibve pakati peterm yacho isati yapera here? Mirai tiende kuCongresska. Kana paine vamwe vamunofunga kuti ava ndivo vangagone basa kupfuura President movaisa mberizve. Congress ikati yaa ava ndivo vatada fine.”
(The feeling is that the President has overstayed, he must step down. If I am leaving is it not true that we just held our elections, why did we hold them? Did we go to the elections so that I could leave half way through y term? Wait, let’s hold our congress. If there are some you think are better than the President, you elect them. If congress endorses them, fine.)
While ZANU-PF used to hold its congress before the elections, this changed with the holding of the 2008 elections which were held three years after the parliamentary election of 2005 to coincide with the presidential elections of 2008.
Since then the congress is now held one year after the elections. The next ZANU-PF congress is scheduled for 2019 while the elections will be held in 2018.
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