Emmerson Mnangagwa, Zimbabwe’s former vice-president is reported to have returned to the country barely two weeks after he reportedly fled after his boss dismissed him.
President Mugabe kicked out Mnangagwa, a key member of the country’s revolutionary struggle, in a move political watchers say was to pave the way for his wife, Grace Mugabe, to become president if he stepped down.
An unnamed aide of the former veep told the AFP news agency that the man known as the “crocodile” was back in the country. AFP said it could not independently verify the report.
Mnangagwa left Zimbabwe on November 8 accusing Mugabe of turning the southern African country into his private property. The Army last Monday asked government to halt purge of his followers in the party of that they will “step in.”
Their comments were met with condemnation but barely 24 hours later, they announced a takeover – insisting it was not a coup – but that they were after criminal elements surrounding the president.
They have entered negotiations with Mugabe for a “dignified exit” but reports indicate that the 93-year-old leader is bent on staying as president till his party, ZANU-PF, go to Congress in December to decide on a new leader.
Mugabe is under house arrest according to the army but was allowed to attend a graduation ceremony in the capital Harare on Friday. He has yet to make any pronouncements on the army’s actions.