A day after Zimbabwe's military took to the street and seized power saying it was keeping President Robert Mugabe and his family safe while targeting “criminals” in his entourage, the Interim Government of Zimbabwe on Thursday installed Emmerson Mnangagwa as the interim president of the country.
The interim government took to Twitter to announce the decision, adding that Mnangagwa will formally take over as the interim president on Friday.
PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT THE PRESIDENT IS IN GOOD HEALTH. COMRADE R.G MUGABE WILL RESIGN FROM THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENCY. THE INSTALLATION OF HIS EXCELLENCY, EMMERSON MNANGAGWA AS INTERIM PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF ZIMBABWE WILL OCCUR ON FRIDAY, 17 NOVEMBER 2017. #ZIMBABWE
— Zimbabwe Government (@GovZimbabwe) November 16, 2017
The interim government also assured citizens that it is trying its best to resolve the constitutional crisis in the country.
MORE THAN ANYTHING, WE, THE INTERIM GOVERNMENT AND THE ARMED FORCES OF ZIMBABWE ARE TRYING OUR BEST TO RESOLVE THE CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS OF OUR REPUBLIC. GOD BLESS YOU ALL, AND GOD BLESS THE REPUBLIC OF ZIMBABWE. #ZIMBABWE — Zimbabwe Government (@GovZimbabwe) November 16, 2017
Mnangagwa, always considered Mugabe's possible successor, was fired as the vice-president of the country last week, plunging Zimbabwe into a fresh political crisis.
The military generals believed that the move was aimed at clearing a path for Grace Mugabe, wife of the country's long-serving leader, to take over and announced on Monday they were prepared to “step in” if purges of their allies did not end.
On Wednesday, soldiers seized the state broadcaster and a general appeared on television to announce the takeover. Armoured vehicles blocked roads to the main government offices, parliament and the courts in central Harare, while taxis ferried commuters to work nearby. The atmosphere in the capital remained calm.
In his first contact with the outside world since the takeover, Mugabe spoke by telephone to the president of South Africa, Jacob Zuma, and told him he was confined to his home but fine, the South African presidency said in a statement.
The main goal of the generals appeared to be preventing Grace, 41 years his junior, from succeeding him.
With inputs from Reuters
Updated Date: Nov 16, 2017 15:19 PM