Re­mem­ber­ing Mu­gabe res­ig­na­tion

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page -

THE cited let­ter writ­ten ex­actly one year ago yes­ter­day, marked the end of the drama filled “Eight Days in Novem­ber” when Mr Mu­gabe ten­dered his res­ig­na­tion as Head of State fol­low­ing a se­ries of events that changed the na­tion’s course of his­tory. On the day, an im­peach­ment mo­tion had been in­tro­duced dur­ing a joint sit­ting of both houses of Par­lia­ment but the de­bate on the mo­tion was ter­mi­nated af­ter then Min­is­ter of Jus­tice, Le­gal and Par­lia­men­tary Af­fairs, Re­tired Ma­jor Gen­eral Hap­py­ton Bony­ongwe, handed the let­ter to Speaker of Par­lia­ment Ad­vo­cate Ja­cob Mu­denda no­ti­fy­ing him of Mr Mu­gabe’s res­ig­na­tion as Pres­i­dent of the coun­try.

The res­ig­na­tion paved way to the new dis­pen­sa­tion led by Pres­i­dent Em­mer­son Mnan­gagwa, ap­pointed by the rul­ing Zanu-PF to suc­ceed Mr Mu­gabe. This year saw the birth of the Sec­ond Repub­lic when he won the Pres­i­den­tial elec­tions of July 30.

The Zanu-PF party also swept Par­lia­ment with a crush­ing ma­jor­ity.

On his ini­tial in­au­gu­ra­tion to fin­ish Mr Mu­gabe’s term and later af­ter win­ning the Pres­i­den­tial polls, Pres­i­dent Mnan­gagwa preached the gospel of peace, unity, love and most im­por­tantly chan­nelling en­er­gies to­wards the build­ing of the econ­omy.

The Pres­i­dent also em­barked on a re-en­gage­ment drive to mend re­la­tions with coun­tries with whom diplo­matic ties had col­lapsed at the same time strength­en­ing those who had stood with the coun­try over the years. The process was themed “Zim­babwe is Open For Busi­ness” the mantra adopted by Pres­i­dent Mnan­gagwa to woo in­vestors into the coun­try fol­low­ing al­most two decades of eco­nomic col­lapse.

This was com­ing against the back­ground of chaos in the end of Mr Mu­gabe’s reign where a clique go­ing by the G40 moniker had caused dis­rup­tions in the run­ning of both party and seats in Gov­ern­ment as they went about their de­struc­tive suc­ces­sion agenda.

The G40, led by the For­mer First Lady, Mrs Grace Mu­gabe, were tak­ing ad­van­tage of Mr Mu­gabe’s ad­vanced age to ma­nip­u­late the for­mer leader into fight­ing and purg­ing lead­ers with strong lib­er­a­tion back grounds and re­plac­ing them with po­lit­i­cal neo­phytes.

In the eight days, a multi-pronged ap­proach led to Mr Mu­gabe’s res­ig­na­tion start­ing with the warn­ing by the Zim­babwe De­fence Forces (ZDF), wor­ried about the state of af­fairs in both party and coun­try, that they would not hes­i­tate to step in, in the de­fence of the na­tional in­ter­ests.

A day af­ter the ZDF state­ment, the Zanu-PF Youth League fronted then by Mr Kudzanai Chipanga hit back at de­fence forces telling them to re­strict them­selves to se­cu­rity is­sues, a state­ment Mr Chipanga later dis­tanced him­self from, al­leg­ing that he had been co­erced to read it.

On the fol­low­ing day, the Zim­babwe De­fence and Se­cu­rity Ser­vices an­nounced that they had stepped in with the launch of Op­er­a­tion Re­store Legacy an in­ter­ven­tion meant to ar­rest a po­ten­tially volatile, so­cial, eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal sit­u­a­tion in the coun­try.The Zim­babwe Na­tional Lib­er­a­tion War Vet­er­ans’ As­so­ci­a­tion held a press con­fer­ence in Harare call­ing on Mr Mu­gabe to step down ac­cus­ing him of sub­or­di­nat­ing his pow­ers to his wife and mem­bers of the G40 ca­bal.

Eight out of 10 Zanu-PF prov­inces, on the fol­low­ing day held Co­or­di­nat­ing Com­mit­tees and re­solved that Cde Mu­gabe be re­called as leader of the rul­ing party and Pres­i­dent of the coun­try.

They also called for Mrs Mu­gabe to be re­called as sec­re­tary for women’s af­fairs in the party and that mem­bers of the G40 fac­tion be ex­pelled from the party.

Zim­bab­weans marched on the streets of Harare, Bu­l­awayo and other parts of the coun­try on the fol­low­ing day in sol­i­dar­ity with the Zim­babwe De­fence and Se­cu­rity Ser­vice and adding their voice to the calls for Cde Mu­gabe to step down.

The Zanu-PF Cen­tral Com­mit­tee met and re­called Mr Mu­gabe from the po­si­tion of party first sec­re­tary and re­placed him with Cde Em­mer­son Mnan­gagwa whom the rul­ing party also re­in­stated as a Cen­tral Com­mit­tee mem­ber.

Cde Mnan­gagwa was also en­dorsed to take over from Cde Mu­gabe as leader of Zanu-PF and Pres­i­dent of the coun­try and also as the party’s Pres­i­den­tial can­di­date in the 2018 elec­tions.

Mrs Mu­gabe was re­moved from her po­si­tion as sec­re­tary for women’s af­fairs and ex­pelled for life for charges rang­ing from fan­ning fac­tion­al­ism and pro­mot­ing hate speech.

The party also re­solved to ex­pel mem­bers of the G40 fac­tion namely; then Vice Pres­i­dent Phelekezela Mphoko, Saviour Ka­sukuwere, Jonathan Moyo, Ig­natius Chombo, Pa­trick Zhuwao, Letina Un­denge, Chipanga, Wal­ter Mzembi, Paul Chimedza, Makhosini Hlong­wane, Anas­tan­cia Ndlovu, Mandi Chimene, Sa­muel Un­denge, Sarah Ma­hoka, Mpehlabayo Malinga, Xavier Kaz­izi, Ton­gai Ka­sukuwere and In­no­cent Ha­man­dishe, Eu­nice Sandi Moyo and Shadreck Mashayamombe.

The meet­ing also gave Cde Mu­gabe up to Mon­day, Novem­ber 19 to step down fail­ure to which, Zanu-PF chief whip, Cde Love­more Matuke, would ini­ti­ate im­peach­ment pro­ceed­ings against him.

In a tele­vised State of the Na­tion Ad­dress at State House on Sun­day Novem­ber 18, Mr Mu­gabe con­ceded that there was a cri­sis in the coun­try and con­cerns raised by the ZDF and ci­ti­zens re­lat­ing to the state of the econ­omy were gen­uine. He said Zim­babwe would chart a new path aimed at restor­ing nor­malcy in the coun­try.

He fi­nally re­signed on Novem­ber 21.

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