Home » Governance » Mugabe Meets Moz’s ‘Next President’, 55

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe on Monday met the man who will likely become neighbouring Mozambique’s next leader in elections scheduled for October this year.

At just 55-years-old, the ruling Frelimo’s presidential candidate, Jacinto Filipe Nyusi, will become Mozambique’s fourth head of State since independence in 1975, should he win this year’s vote.

In contrast, Zimbabweans have known only one leader since independence in 1980 with Mugabe, now 90-years-old, ruling out retirement.

The veteran leader has been clinging on to power, arguing that both the country and his Zanu PF party cannot do without him. He does not say what will become of both when his mortal clock chimes its last.

Mugabe won another five-year term in office last year which he vowed to see out, meaning he will be 94 at the next elections in 2018 when some in his party want him to run again.

Nyusi was chosen as the ruling Frelimo party’s election candidate in March after incumbent Armando Guebuza said he was stepping down after serving two terms in office – the maximum permitted under the country’s constitution.

Nyusi will, among others, face the former rebel Renamo party’s Afonso Dhlakama in the October elections.

Mugabe said he was backing Frelimo to win and likened Renamo to local opposition party, the MDC-T.

“Zanu PF and Frelimo are one, so their candidate is our candidate. We will also support them. We wish him well. We wish him success,” said Mugabe.

“We will not say anything because we know that people will always choose those who have their interest at heart.

“You have Renamo there which is like MDC and you know what happened last year on July 31. That is what is going to happen on 15 October (in Mozambique’s election). We say victory is certain. Aluta continua.”

Nyusi said he was hoping for improved relations between Harare and Maputo.

“Now I am running for election as President of the Republic of Mozambique,” he said.

“It means improving our relationship between Zimbabwe and Mozambique, mainly in the economic area. We need to do more than political relationships.”

Source : New Zimbabwe