Zimbabweans are voting today, but Mugabe is raging  Updated for 2021

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Updated: March 1, 2021


Zimbabweans go to the polls on Monday to elect a new President, but former President Robert Mugabe erupted in anger on Sunday, blasting the man who replaced him after he was forced out of power last November, and urging voters to dump his ZANU-PF party.

“I cannot vote for those who have tormented me,” Mugabe said at a press conference. “I can’t.”

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It is the first time Mugabe is not on the ballot since Zimbabwe’s independence in 1980. For 37 years, he ruled Zimbabwe with an iron fist, crushing any opposition and attacking anyone in the world who disagreed with his rule and policies.

At his press conference on Sunday, he hinted that he would support Nelson Chamisa, the lawyer, pastor and leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change.

Last year, Mugabe was ousted by his former vice president and enforcer, Emmerson Mnangagwa.

As reported by NPR, “under Mugabe, Mnangagwa was exiled from government, but he regrouped abroad and persuaded the head of the army, Constantino Chiwenga, to join him in forcing Mugabe out of power.

“In November, tanks rolled through the streets of the capital city. Troops surrounded Mugabe’s home, and for the first time in decades, the military allowed Zimbabweans to march on the streets en masse to call for Mugabe’s resignation. Feeling cornered, Mugabe stepped down. Mnangagwa took over the presidency and Chiwenga became his vice president.

“On Sunday, Mugabe spoke for nearly two hours. He was at times bitter, recalcitrant and still eaten up by the betrayal. He said he hoped Monday’s election would “bring a better day.”

“And without a hint of irony, the man who led a regime that squashed dissent violently for decades said he yearned for the days of freedom in Zimbabwe. He said that since he was ousted, his friends and allies no longer feel free to express their support of him.

“What have we become in the country?” he said. “Have we become savages, terrorists to ourselves?”

According to NPR, Mnangagwa blamed Mugabe loyalists for a grenade attack at one of his rallies earlier this month. So his speech was being carefully monitored, and officials in Mugabe’s former party, Zanu-PF, responded swiftly.

Nick Mangwana, who is part of the Zanu-PF communications team, wrote on Twitter that the party had been made “aware of the rumblings of a retired old man.”

“He is a pensioner and we will continue to respect him in that regard as cultured Africans regardless of the fact he no longer merits it,” he wrote. “He has 1 Vote like all of us and his vote choice is respected.”

Later in the evening, Mnangagwa tried to turn the tables. He recorded a video message, saying Mugabe’s statement made it clear that he was now part of an alliance with the opposition.

“The choice is clear, you either vote for Mugabe under the guise of Chamisa or you vote for a new Zimbabwe under my leadership and Zanu-PF,” he said.

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Today News Africahttps://todaynewsafrica.com
Today News Africa is a US-based international news organization focused on US-Africa policy and breaking news. Our goal is to provide truthful and exclusive stories to a diverse audience across North America and the African Continent. Subscribe to our news page at https://todaynewsafrica.com/ and Follow us on Twitter @todaynewsafrica
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