Saturday, 22 February 2014

Zimbabwe President, Robert Mugabe Turns 90; Says He Is Not Ready To Retire

Zimbabwe's long-time President Robert Mugabe, who turned 90 on Friday, once again criticised leaders fanning factionalism in his ruling Zanu-PF party to succeed him and threatened to expel them if they continued with the bad practice.

He said succession should not be discussed when it was not due because the leadership that runs the country still exists.

"When the day comes and I retire, yes, sure, the day will come, but I do not want to leave my party in tatters. I want to leave it intact.

"It is terrible even to have your name mentioned as leader of a faction. It is shameful," he said

Mugabe urged senior party officials to behave as national rather than regional leaders, and work to serve interests of the electorate.

Mugabe, who won another five years in office in last year's election, has indicated that he intends to serve his full term until 2018 when he turns 94.

George Charamba, Mugabe's spokesperson said the president, who left for Singapore on Monday, would undergo a cataract operation to his left eye after an earlier had been done to his right eye.

He said he would be back to attend a grand celebration organised by the ruling party in an eastern Zimbabwean town on Sunday.

Mugabe has been the leader of Zimbabwe since independence from Britain in 1980, and having ruled for 34 years, he is Africa's oldest leader and one of the continent's longest reign president.

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