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Zimbabwe’s first lady Grace Mugabe said in early November of Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa that it was “a poisonous snake” that “must be hit on the head”.
Just one day later, President Robert Mugabe, dismissed Mnangagwa, who was accused of disloyalty and left the country.
The presidential marriage was then dedicated to seek support in the governing African National Union Zimbabwean-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF, for its acronym in English) to get her to fill the vacant vice-presidency.
Many analysts believe that this maneuver initiated the struggle for power that led to the military operation on Wednesday in the African country, which placed the elderly president (93 years) under house arrest and who, according to some forecasts, could place Mnangagwa in the presidency.
Andrew Harding, a BBC correspondent in Africa, says that “Mugabe’s mistake was to assume that he was still powerful enough to establish a dynasty with his wife as his successor.”
Harding believes that Mnangagwa will now take control and many foreign governments will give him “the benefit of the doubt”.