President Robert Mugabe may have been sworn-in Thursday but his advanced age and frequent trips to seek medical attention in the far East are said to be fueling succession fights in his party.
Under the new constitution, if the president dies, resigns or is removed from office or becomes incapacitated, the first vice president assumes office until the expiry of the former president’s term of office.
But senior Zanu PF officials say this has not stopped the succession dispute pitting Vice President Joyce Mujuru and Defense Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The two have consistently denied that they have ambitions to succeed Mr. Mugabe but Mrs. Mujuru gave an interview last week to the Independent daily news in which she said she was ready to take over the reigns from Mr. Mugabe.
President Mugabe has castigated senior party officials he said were consulting traditional and spiritual healers to enhance their chances to succeed him saying there is no vacancy at State House.
This has not helped to ease tensions in the party. The party is also expected to appoint a second vice president to succeed the late John Nkomo.
Party chairman Simon Khaya Moyo leads the race though challengers are said to be in the wings.
Political science PhD. candidate at Rhodes University Gideon Chitanga says it’s a great cause for concern that Mr. Mugabe will end his term aged 94.