Peter Nyoni | Towards the end of his reign, former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe had planned a way out that could have left the country, at a better position by now, and that could have proffered in a better trajectory for the nation.
Mugabe had already side-lined the big-headed ‘dead wood’ that now forms the core of President Mnangagwa’s government.
Mugabe would have either left the power in the safe hands of Sydney Sekeramayi; the youthful Generation 40, (G40), or could have given power to his wife Grace Mugabe, as he had no confidence in the current leadership led by his then deputy, Emmerson Mnangagwa (ED).
The good thing about that situation would have rested not on the supposition of the G40 or Grace being saints per se, but on the absence of most of the current big-egoed leaders who now shoot the citizens they claim to be leading for the love of power.
The good thing about his plan was that Mugabe was in the process of kicking out most of the ‘dead wood’ now current leaders; starting with Mnangagwa, VP Mohadi, Oppah Muchinguri and notorious war veterans like Mutsvangwa, Mahiya and Matemadanda.
Based on the ‘Blue Ocean Coup’ data that Mugabe had, the then General Constantino Chiwenga was also about to be kicked out too. Mugabe knew how bad ED and his team were, from experience of having had worked with them for years, he knew how notorious the boys would be, given the keys to the armoury.
Many people thought Mugabe was out of his mind, for not preferring his then deputy, ED and his old schools guys(‘dead wood’) whom he had known for years.
Some political scientists believe, that had Mugabe’s plan prevailed, Zimbabweans could have benefited in some way. “Even if the G40 or Grace Mugabe were not the best option going forward, the good thing was that they wouldn’t have beaten Nelson Chamisa in the elections,” one analyst said.
Their lack of war credentials which most of the ‘dead wood’ brag about could have weakened the G40 or Grace Mugabe’s dominance against Chamisa, who managed to garner more than 44 per cent of the votes in the just ended and highly contested polls.
While, Mugabe was aware that Mnangagwa has almost similar personal traits and personality attributes with him, he however, knew that the later was not hesitant on pulling the trigger, even towards unarmed citizens. Having had worked closely with him during the Gukurahundi massacres, when he was National Security Minister in 1980, Mugabe also knew how ruthless Mnangagwa can be.
Some believe it was because of the above and the understanding of Mnangagwa that led to Mugabe’s hesitation to anoint his long-term ally, and his then deputy as the heir to the throne. Food for thought.
Peter Nyoni is a Zimbabwean businessman who travels frequently between Harare and South Africa…He writes in his own capacity