The Elephant in the Room: Zimbabwe’s Ongoing Succession Crisis

Zimbabwe's first lady, Grace Mugabe, addresses party supporters at a rally, Harare, Nov. 19, 2015 (AP photo by Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi).
Zimbabwe's first lady, Grace Mugabe, addresses party supporters at a rally, Harare, Nov. 19, 2015 (AP photo by Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi).

Zimbabwe’s ruling party, ZANU-PF, held its annual conference at Victoria Falls on Dec. 11 and 12, an event preceded by meetings of the party’s politburo and central committee. Although these gatherings were ostensibly exercises to take stock of the party’s work over the past year, in reality they were dominated by a single issue: the question of who will succeed 91-year-old President Robert Mugabe. Mugabe’s succession has become the elephant in the room of Zimbabwean politics, an issue that everyone is invited to ignore while simultaneously discussing little else. The succession question defines the country’s domestic scene and continues to […]

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