UK public broadcaster Channel 4 has released video footage of President Robert Mugabe entering a private hospital in Singapore.
The video (read Channel 4 report here) shows Mugabe, walking with a discernible limp, entering the private Gleneagles Hospital with his wife, Grace, and bodyguards pleading with the cameraperson not to film the veteran leader.
Grace Mugabe can be heard asking the cameraperson “You shouldn’t take photo; why are you taking photo?”
Mugabe, who turned 90 this year and is said to be battling failing health, left Harare for Singapore last week.
Presidential spokesman George Charamba said the Zanu PF leader would be in the Southeast Asian country for a week-long private visit "during (which he) will undergo a routine eye check-up following a recent procedure on the same.”
Gleneagles Hospital says its Parkway Eye Centre offers the latest in blade-free LASIK and cataract removal surgery. Mugabe has admitted having cataracts removed on both eyes in Singapore.
According to Channel 4 however, the hospital’s Parkway Cancer Centre is also “well-regarded” but top aides dismiss reports Mugabe is also battling advanced prostate cancer.
The latest trip to Singapore is Mugabe’s second this year for medical reasons.
Earlier this month Presidential Affairs Minister Didymus Mutasa suggested that the Zimbabwean government could criminalise discussion of both Mugabe's health and the presidential succession.
The veteran leader called a meeting of his Zanu PF party’s politburo before leaving the country last week.
Mutasa, also Zanu PF’s Secretary for Administration, on Monday summoned members to another politburo meeting scheduled for Wednesday to discuss “various issues”.
Mugabe crushed rival Morgan Tsvangirai in last year’s elections to win another five-year term in office.
His insists he will serve out his new term in full, ruling out retirement despite concerns about his advanced age and alleged poor health.
MUGABE AT SINGAPORE HOSPITAL