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MDCs now dead and buried: Mnangagwa
06/10/2013 00:00:00
by Staff Reporter
 
Rare breed of freedom fighter ... Emmerson Mnangagwa
 
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JUSTICE Minister and Zanu PF politburo member Emmerson Mnangagwa has said the opposition MDC formations were “dead and buried” after suffering a crushing defeat in the July 31 elections which also ended the power sharing deal between the parties.

Zanu PF won a decisive two thirds majority in Parliament while President Robert Mugabe was also re-elected for another five-year term with a landslide victory over long-term rival Morgan Tsvangirai who claims the vote was a monumental fraud.

Mnangagwa, said to be battling vice president Joyce Mujuru to succeed Mugabe, told supporters at a victory celebration in Masvingo that the July poll had consigned the MDC parties to the “dustbin of history”.

“I want to urge all Zimbabweans to continue rallying behind Zanu PF because it is a tried and tested party that has a clear idea on how to improve the lives of the people through the indigenisation and economic empowerment programme, among other policies,” Mnangagwa told supporters at victory celebrations for politburo member and cabinet minister Josaya Hungwe.

“Zanu PF is the party for the future and the MDC formations are now dead and buried after their crushing defeat during the just-ended harmonised elections.’’

The elections were endorsed by African observers but Western countries, barred from observing the vote by Mugabe, have backed Tsvangirai’s claim that the vote was not credible and refused to lift sanctions against the country.

One of the major challenges facing the new Zanu PF government is righting an economy still struggling to recover from a ten-year recession Mugabe blames on the sanctions which were imposed over allegations of rights abuses and electoral fraud.

“I want to urge you to continue supporting and rallying behind Zanu PF because it is the only party that has a tradition of being on the side of the people always, since independence,” said Mnangagwa.

“No matter how hard things might be, no matter how difficult the situation might be, we should continue to rally behind Zanu PF because it is the only party that has interests of Zimbabweans at heart.’’

Although he denies actively seeking to take over from Mugabe, Mnangagwa is said to be a top contender to succeed the veteran leader who however, insists he will see out his new five-year term.



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And fellow politburo member and energy minister Dzikamai Mavhaire probably sought to signal his succession preferences (or those of Masvingo province) in his eulogy to Mnangagwa at the celebrations.

According to the Herald newspaper, Mavhaire described Mnangagwa as a rare breed of freedom fighter and one of the faces of the liberation struggle with an impeccable track record in fighting against colonial domination.

Using praise language usually reserved for Mugabe, Mavhaire urged Zimbabweans to emulate “the loyalty and dedication to duty” of a man who only survived execution on an age technicality after being sentenced to death for bombing a Rhodesian train in the 1960s.


 
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