WASHINGTON DC —
President Robert Mugabe has fired a broadside at the two factions in his party said to be gunning to take over from him when he leaves office.
Mr. Mugabe reiterated his previous statements that it is not certain that his deputy Joyce Mujuru and her fiercest rival, Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, will succeed him. He said Zanu PF members and supporters will choose their new leader.
Mr. Mugabe made the remarks while addressing his Gushungo clansmen in his Zvimba rural home. The battle to succeed the 90-year old leader has intensified in Zanu-PF resulting in clashes in Manicaland and Masvingo provinces allegedly pitting backers of Mujuru and Mnangagwa against each other.
Efforts to get a comment from the two were, however, futile as their mobile phones went unanswered. The two have previously furiously denied reports linking them to the warring factions in the party.
Mr. Mugabe said the two were not his only automatic replacements as there are some individuals in the party who are also capable of leading the liberation party.
He said he will not be retiring any time soon as he still has some unfinished business to attend to.
Political analyst Earnest Mudzengi, director of the Media Centre, said the remarks are vintage Mugabe tactics to cling on to power.