December 17, 2017

Zimbabwe’s Mnangagwa promises jobs, Raila reacts

Zimbabwe’s incoming President Emmerson Mnangagwa has spoken a day after Robert Mugabe tendered his resignation.

Mnangagwa said on Wednesday (22/11/17) that his priority when he assumes office would be to create jobs in the ‘new’ democracy.

“We want to grow our economy, we want peace, we want jobs, jobs, jobs,” he told thousands in Harare.

According to findings, 90% of Zimbabweans are jobless and nearly three-quarters live on less than $5.50 a day.

On November 6, Mugabe sacked Mnangagwa as vice president, as the veteran leader appeared to clear the way for his wife Grace to succeed him.

The move came after a tense weekend in which Mnangagwa and Grace Mugabe — who were seen as the leading candidates to replace the 93-year-old president — openly traded barbs.

“The vice president has consistently and persistently exhibited the traits of disloyalty, disrespect, deceitfulness and unreliability,” Information Minister Simon Khaya Moyo said as he announced the removal.

Mugabe submitted his resignation after nearly four decades as the country’s leader.

He defied demands to step down for almost a week after a military takeover and expulsion from his own ruling ZANU-PF party but stepped down on Tuesday, hours after parliament started an impeachment process.

Cheers broke out in the parliament after speaker Jacob Mudenda read out Mugabe’s resignation letter.

“I Robert Gabriel Mugabe in terms of section 96 of the constitution of Zimbabwe hereby formally tender my resignation … with immediate effect,” said Mudenda, reading the letter.

Opposition leader Raila Odinga lauded the bloodless removal of Mugabe from power and urged Zimbabwe to pursue path to a credible election.

“You have succeeded in peacefully overthrowing tyranny and dictatorship and created for yourselves the promise of a prosperous future that only democracy can provide,” he said.

Raila told Zimbabweans that the event marked a historic moment for the country.

“I encourage to move swiftly towards consolidating your gains towards democracy, which alone will prevent the return of the old order.

“I believe I was the only African leader to have condemned Mr Mugabe’s power grab through a rigged election and offered support for your democratic future,” he added.

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