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First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe’s disclosure that she harbours no presidential ambitions is a call for politicians to move away from electoral and power politics to developmental politics, analysts have said.

They urged all whose names were being touted in the so-called succession matrix to speak out so that the party and Government can concentrate on delivery and development.

In an interview with The Sunday Mail at the weekend, Dr Mugabe said she would rather concentrate on developmental issues and her duties as the First Lady.

Dr Mugabe is also involved in charity work as she runs a children’s home and school in Mazowe for orphans.

She is also the matron for Danhiko School of the Disabled and many other charitable organisations.

Dr Mugabe dismissed as false rumours circulating that she was being groomed to take over from President Mugabe if he retires.

Her comments on presidential ambitions come barely a week after Zanu-PF political commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere also distanced himself from succession politics.

Political analyst Mr Alexander Rusero yesterday hailed Dr Mugabe, saying her noble position on leadership was an indirect call for politicians within Zanu-PF and outside to redirect their efforts to politics of development.

“Dr Mugabe is fast becoming a pacesetter as her sentiments to focus on development will go a long way in convincing fellow politicians that development is more important than power struggles,” he said.

“The sentiments are an indirect plea for all politicians to put development issues ahead of personal and retrogressive politics of suc- cession.”

Mr Rusero said the First Lady’s comments put to rest speculation that had been circulating of her aspiring to be the leader of the country as part of the so-called G40 that the private media harps about.

“All the imaginary journalism that we have been seeing in the private press will now come to an end,” he said. “The media should now refocus the kind of reportage on the First Lady.”

Another analyst, Mr Godwine Mureriwa, hailed Dr Mugabe, saying politicians should take a cue from the First Lady and consider people ahead of their brittle ambitions.

“There is need for re-orientation of the total leadership so that they appreciate that they are elected to serve the people, provide shelter, food and other means for the masses to sustain themselves,” he said.

“They must desist from the politics of pulling each other down or to just think of fattening their pockets always. It is not about power, but availing resources to the people.

“The sentiments by Amai Mugabe bring a paradigm shift from electoral and power politics to developmental politics that benefits the nation.”

Lawyer Mr Tendai Toto said Amai Mugabe was already high-profile by virtue of being President Mugabe’s wife and people were simply failing to understand her.

“The statement by the First Lady is welcome in that it has put to rest speculation by certain quarters of the Zimbabwean and international community that President Mugabe was establishing a bedroom Republic post his retirement,” he said.

“The humanitarian responsibilities of the First Lady have been spelt out to all and sundry and such responsibilities are internationally recognised.

“She is already part of the Presidium by virtue of her marriage to the President. She has seen it all on what happens and transpires via the Presidium, to the extent that presidential ambitions speculated by bystanders remain baseless and contemptuous of her dignity and integrity.”

Mr Toto said if the First Lady so wishes, she was eligible, just like any other Zimbabwean, to campaign for the presidency in future but for now the focus, as she rightly put it, was on livelihoods.

“If she nurtures any such presidential ambitions at any other time in the future, she may be eligible and can campaign for the presidential position like any other citizen,” said Mr Toto.

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February 2018
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