Mnangagwa Hints at Retirement Amid Pressure for Extended Tenure

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HARARE – President Emmerson Mnangagwa has subtly indicated that he may soon retire from the presidency, rejecting calls from his supporters to extend his tenure beyond the constitutionally mandated two terms, which are set to end in 2028.

Despite pressure from Zanu-PF loyalists to seek another term and potential moves to amend the constitution, the president hinted at his retirement during a recent groundbreaking ceremony for a new cricket stadium in Victoria Falls. Speaking in Shona, Mnangagwa suggested he might not seek further leadership beyond the constitutional limits, stating, “When I look at this place, I envision establishing my own cattle business here after retirement to generate income from selling cattle in the butcheries that will be housed here.”

Reports indicate that Zanu-PF, leveraging its two-thirds majority in the National Assembly, is advocating for constitutional amendments to prolong Mnangagwa’s rule. This effort has gained momentum, particularly in Mnangagwa’s political strongholds of Masvingo and Midlands, ahead of the upcoming Zanu-PF congress later this year.

The Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CiZC), commemorating the Constitution’s 11th anniversary, has denounced the proposed extension of Mnangagwa’s presidency as unlawful. CiZC, in collaboration with pro-democracy groups, is mobilizing citizens to oppose illegal amendments and resist efforts to prolong Mnangagwa’s stay in office, including reported attempts to postpone the 2028 elections.

“We are committed to upholding the constitution and ensuring that no illegal extensions of power are made,” a CiZC spokesperson said. “We will continue to mobilize citizens and pro-democracy groups to safeguard our democratic principles.”

As the Zanu-PF congress approaches, the political landscape in Zimbabwe remains tense, with debates over the constitution and the future leadership of the country taking center stage.