Emmerson Mnangagwa: The man behind Zimbabwe coup?
As Zimbambwe gets on the edge following Robert Mugabe’s detention ,many now believe that Mnangagwa is behide the coup.See Also:Government Jobs in Kenya – Nandi
As it stands,Emmerson Mnangagwa appears well-placed to return to a leading role in Zimbabwe following the army’s takeover in response to President Robert Mugabe’s sacking of the former vice president.
Nicknamed “Ngwena” (The Crocodile) because of his fearsome power and ruthlessness, the 75-year-old is said to be a notorious and much-feared figure in Zimbabwe, having led a vicious crackdown on opponents in the 1980s with the help of the dreaded North Korean-trained Fifth Army brigade.
Thousands of civilians were killed during the Gukurahundi campaign, but Mnangagwa has always denied involvement.
According to ‘The Star’, Mnangagwa reputation for cruelty is so legendary that he was one of the few leaders of Zimbabwe known to drive around the country without security.Read Also:8 Great Internet Marketing Tips for Businesses
The then vice president is also known for his unpredictable darting eyes and is understood to be a Chelsea supporter due to his admiration of the club’s former striker Didier Drogba.
He is said to have had a long and varied political career, leading at one point the justice, defense, housing and finance ministries as well as being the speaker of the lower house and a spymaster.
Mnangagwa was widely viewed as Mugabe’s successor until he was ditched by the president last week and fled to South Africa on claims that he was plotting to take power from him, while his ambitious wife Grace referred to him as a snake that ‘must be hit on the head’ after the two clashed. See Also:Top ways to keep your children busy over the holiday
Mnangagwa, who recently survived a poisoning attempt blamed on ice-cream from Mugabe’s own dairy, has been telling allies he would return rapidly and everything would soon be ‘sorted’.
He leads ‘Lacoste’ faction – named after the clothes firm’s crocodile logo, which matches Mnangagwa’s reptilian nickname – within Mugabe’s party. The group enjoys strong support among military figures.
According to the look of things,the struggle between Grace and Mnangagwa to succeed 93-year-old Mugabe appears to be shifting in the Crocodile’s favor.
Mnangagwa was born on September 15, 1942 in southwestern Zvishavana distric. He completed his early education in Zimbabwe before his family relocated to neighbouring Zambia.Read Also:Kwaheri bwana Gakuru, Pema Mola akulaze
Fathered by a political agitator for the repeal of colonial laws that disadvantaged blacks,Mnangagwa joined the struggle for independence from Britain in 1966, becoming one of the young combatants who helped direct the war after undergoing training in China and Egypt.
University of London-educated Mnangagwa has been close to Mugabe since the two were side-by-side in the struggle against racist white-minority rule in then-Rhodesia.
After the formation of ZANU-PF, modern Zimbabwe’s ruling party in 1963, Mnangagwa was sent for military training in Communist China.
He earned his ‘Crocodile’ nickname when he returned to Zimbabwe and led a gang of fighters called the ‘Crocodile Group’ during the civil war.
The gang blew up several trains during their operations against the Rhodesian government and, as a consequence, Mnangagwa was arrested in 1965.Onyonka beats Jubilee’s Kibagendi,retains Kitutu Chache MP seat
He confessed to revolutionary activity and was savagely tortured, but escaped the death penalty after successfully arguing that, because he was under 21, he should not be executed.
He was instead sentenced to ten years in jail, being kept at Salisbury Prison, Grey Prison, Khami Prison and Harare Prison where at the time of imprisonment became close to Mugabe and other nationalist leaders.
His deportation to Zambia made him study law and – in the late 1970s – became a senior member of ZANU-PF. Job Opportunity:Government Jobs – NCIC
Mnangagwa was named as Prime Minister Mugabe’s national security chief. hen Zimbabwe became independent in 1980.
When Mugabe made himself president seven years later, Mnangagwa was made justice minister.
He was rewarded by Mugabe for his loyalty in 2000 when, having lost his seat in parliament, he was appointed to an unelected seat and made speaker of the lower house.Read Also:Eye witness Dennis Ngengi arrested
During the 2008 elections, Mnangagwa repaid Mugabe for his support with the Crocodile said to have steered the president to victory after Morgan Tsvangirai won the first round.
It is remembered that hundreds of Tsvangirai’s supporters were killed in the political violence blamed on Mugabe’s regime, forcing Tsvangirai to step aside and giving Mugabe a clear run at the presidency and was then made defense minister and, in 2013, vice president.
Mnangagwa once remarked that he had been taught to ‘destroy and kill’ – although he later claimed to be a born-again Christian.
Previously,Takavafira Zhou, a political analyst at Masvingo State University, described Mnangagwa as ‘a hardliner to the core’. Mnangagwa reputedly has deep pockets should he decide to launch a political comeback.
2008 WikiLeaks publication claimed Mnangagwa had amassed ‘extraordinary wealth’ during Zimbabwe’s 1998 intervention in gold- and diamond-rich Democratic Republic of Congo. He appeared to be on course to become the country’s next leader, but First Lady Grace Mugabe did not approve,
Last month,First lady Grace warned of a possible coup being orchestrated by Vice President Mnangagwa amid a heated power struggle, claiming his allies were threatening to kill people who did not support his bid to succeed Mugabe.
The First Lady also said Mnangagwa wanted to stage a coup in 1080s to wrestle power from the president in union with the whites.To Read:Merck Foundation Launch at 4th Edition of Merck Africa Asia Luminary – Egypt