Let failed leader depart
THE media is well versed in reporting the demise of one Robert Gabriel Mugabe. Heaven knows, we’ve had plenty of practice, false starts and wild goose chases.
Mugabe became the oldest head of state in the world in August and the longest serving. His reign has been tumultuous and deadly at worst – and eventful at the very least. From the genocide in Matabeleland to rigged elections, Mugabe has been uncompromising in the face of pressure to abide by international norms.
The son of a Malawian father and a Shona mother, Mugabe was brought up a Roman Catholic and spent most of his childhood with his nose buried in books. He would go on to obtain at least seven degrees, including a Bachelor of Law, Master of Science and Bachelor of Education.
On the cusp of 93, Mugabe has publicly hinted at retirement for the first time – a voluntary abdication no one thought possible. Many expected he would die before he surrendered power.
Mugabe, the only leader Zimbabwe has known since independence, told a group of “war collaborators and detainees” who participated in the 1970s war of liberation that although stepping down was now inevitable, he wanted to do so “properly”.
“If I am failing, let me know. I will go,” he told the audience.
There is still life in this tragic African figure – whether you despise or adore him. As the speculation mounts and the fake news abounds, let us keep in mind what’s best for the people of Zimbabwe.