After over one month Mugabe celebrated his birthday, his cabinet members present him with a “special” mobile chair. Mugabe’s wheelchair appears to have more meaning than meets the eye.
It all boils down to the one truth that Zimbabwe’s ruling cabal is not ready to accept or rather respect.
Mugabe gets frailer by the minute. Bowing out of office is Africa’s expectation but the Zim leader who has described himself as the Hitler of our time will not have any of that.
His wife had said he will rule till he is a 100-years old, using a wheelchair or even ruling from the grave. That is how far the First Lady has gone to emphasize that Mugabe is going nowhere.
“We are going to create a special wheelchair for Mugabe until he rules to a 1oo-years, because that is what we want,”
Special wheelchair she said? And today Mugabe has been indeed graced with a wheelchair, a belated birthday gift from his cabinet ministers at the state house.
According to the ministers, the gift was to celebrate Mugabe who turned 93 in February. Secondly, they said they wanted to help him ease up his movement.
In recent official functions, Mugabe’s physical weakness gets all the more obvious as walking has become an uphill task for the sit-tight president.
The ministers say that the wheelchair will “enable him navigate his way around his office as well as at home.”
Mugabe showed appreciation for the gift and their thoughtfulness. He says this is a proof that his administration has a team spirit.
“I thank all of you for putting your heads together to come up with this gift,”
“The gift shows the team spirit which should always prevail all times in the delivery of service to the nation.”
As the ZANU-PF perhaps applaud the “golden” gesture in Mugabe’s wheelchair, the opposition and some political observers have advised the party to “call a spade a spade”.
They find it appalling that at this stage the ruling party is still playing politics with the future of Zimbabwe. The president’s failing health and refusal to step down has become a concern many believe is a contributory factor to the series of setbacks the nation has experienced in recent times.
Zimbabwe’s political analyst, Reward Mushayabasa, says Mugabe is totally unfit to be president given his age and health. He says Mugabe at this stage could not care any less what happens to the people. Mugabe is bent on making his self-set record.
“He does not care about the welfare of Zimbabweans and the legacy he will bequeath to our nation. He is more interested in self-preservation,”
ZANU-PF left the people wondering if there were no more qualified candidates the party can produce as their flag bearer for the next elections. The party endorsed President Mugabe to run for the 2019 elections which is scheduled tentatively for July.
Mugabe’s wheelchair has been perceived as a sarcastic and indirect way of telling him to take the bow. Alex Magaisa, a constitutional lawyer and former adviser to Mugabe’s rival, Morgan Tsvangirai says Mugabe should read between the lines.
“So President Mugabe’s cabinet gave him a special mobile chair. Does he get the message?”
Many share Magaisa’s view. They believe every sane Zimbabwean is overly tired of Mugabe’s endless rule. Perhaps the party wanted to subtly chip in their “tiredness” as well.