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Vol 55 No 18

Published 12th September 2014


Zimbabwe

Mice at play

ZANU-PF factions bickered when Mugabe was away in China and suffered the full force of his frustration when he returned empty-handed

President Robert Mugabe's movements are always top secret and the first indication of his four-day trip to Beijing was a picture of himself and Grace Mugabe being seen off at Harare Airport on 31 August. The presidential couple seemed typically aloof as Vice-President Joice Mujuru and her ally Didymus Mutasa bade farewell. Once they were in the air, officials in the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front began manoeuvring around the clock. On the happy couple's return, police had to keep rival factions of the Harare Youth League, who had been bussed to the airport, away from each other and from the presidential party. There were several arrests. At issue was a demand for the Youth Congress elections to be re-held. The faction of Mujuru's chief rival in the presidential succession struggle, Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, had lost.

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