Zimbabwe

Harare (AFP) Former Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe described his departure from office in November as a “coup d’etat” in his first TV interview since then, aired by South Africa’s state broadcaster on Thursday. “I say it was a coup d’etat — some people have refused to call it a coup d’etat,” said Mugabe referring to the brief takeover by the army which led to Emmerson Mnangagwa assuming power after Mugabe’s resignation. “(…) We must undo this disgrace we have imposed on ourselves,” he said. Mugabe was forced to quit whenRead More
Harare (AFP) Former Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe described his departure from office in November as a “coup d’etat” that “we must undo” in his first TV interviews since then, aired on Thursday. Mugabe, 94, spoke slowly but clearly to South Africa’s SABC broadcaster from an office in Harare, dressed in a grey suit, sitting in front of a portrait of himself and his wife Grace. “I say it was a coup d’etat — some people have refused to call it a coup d’etat,” said Mugabe referring to the brief armyRead More
Norton (Zimbabwe) (AFP) If you’ve ever dreamt of playing alongside Afro-jazz legend Oliver “Tuku” Mtukudzi, just drop into his studio in Zimbabwe and pick up an instrument. Mtukudzi — one of Africa’s most famous and admired musicians — has an open-door policy at his arts centre in Norton, 50 kilometres (30 miles) west of Harare. Aged 65 and with more than 60 albums under his belt, the self-taught singer and guitarist says the centre provides a home for all musicians, particularly youngsters who often face disapproval from their parents atRead More
Harare (AFP) Dozens of Zimbabweans protested Friday as Harare-based Western diplomats called on the new government to investigate the abduction three years ago of a rights activist and firebrand critic of ex-ruler Robert Mugabe. Itai Dzamara, who was also a journalist, was kidnapped by five men as he left a barbershop near his home in Harare in 2015. He has not been seen since then. In a statement, European Union and top US diplomats encouraged “the new administration to ensure that human rights violations are tackled decisively and transparently, toRead More
Harare (AFP) Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Thursday met with Zimbabwe’s new President Emmerson Mnangagwa and discussed possible military co-operation as well as plans to boost economic ties. Lavrov, who is on a tour of Africa, is the first high-profile Russian official to visit Zimbabwe since veteran ruler Robert Mugabe’s resignation in November last year. “We talked about the tasks that we have to pursue in order to develop these trade and economic ties between our countries,” Lavrov told journalists after meeting Mnangagwa at his office in the capitalRead More
Headlands (Zimbabwe) (AFP) When the riot police arrived, Zimbabwean farmworker Mary Mhuriyengwe saw her life fall apart as her job and home disappeared in the ruthless land seizures that defined Robert Mugabe’s rule. Mhuriyengwe, 35, watched as police carrying AK-47 rifles released teargas to force white farmer Robert Smart off his land in June 2017 — perhaps the last of 18 years of evictions that helped to trigger the country’s economic collapse. A widow and mother of two, Mhuriyengwe relied on her work as a general labourer at Smart’s LesburyRead More
Harare (AFP) Zimbabwe’s main opposition on Thursday named a former youth activist, Nelson Chamisa, as its candidate for upcoming presidential polls, the party’s first major test since the death of its charismatic leader and the ouster of Robert Mugabe. Chamisa, 40, becomes the Movement for Democratic Change’s electoral champion after veteran leader Morgan Tsvangirai died of cancer on February 14 at the age of 65. Tsvangirai embodied opposition to former president Mugabe whom the MDC accused of vote-rigging, voter intimidation and authoritarian behaviour. But Tsvangirai’s final months were marked byRead More
Harare (AFP) Zimbabwe’s former president Robert Mugabe celebrated his 94th birthday on Saturday with a private black-tie party hosted by his family, three months after he was ousted from power. Mugabe’s birthday was previously a major public event in Zimbabwe, marked by an outpouring of fawning congratulations and tributes in official media from regime loyalists, government ministries and agencies. His actual birthday on Wednesday was declared an annual public holiday for the first time this year, but the occasion was greeted without fanfare. “The party is only for close familyRead More
Harare (AFP) Zimbabweans marked Robert Mugabe’s 94th birthday on Wednesday with an official day off, but without the extravagant cakes and fawning tributes that defined February 21 for much of his 37-year rule. As president, Mugabe typically celebrated with a rambling speech while wearing a suit decorated with images of his own face at a party that included a lavish feast. But following his ousting in November after a brief military takeover, this year’s festivities were restrained. Other than a solitary editorial proclaiming the former head of state’s big dayRead More
Buhera (Zimbabwe) (AFP) Thousands of Zimbabweans gathered Tuesday to bid a final farewell to opposition veteran Morgan Tsvangirai who was one of Africa’s most admired politicians and lived to see the fall of his political nemesis Robert Mugabe. “We are celebrating a hero,” said the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party’s acting president Nelson Chamisa. Tsvangirai, the country’s fiercest opponent of former president Mugabe’s tyrannical 37-year rule, died on Wednesday aged 65 at a hospital in South Africa where he had been undergoing treatment for colon cancer. His bodyRead More