Joice Mujuru, Zimbabwe’s former vice-president, launched a new party on Tuesday to challenge Robert Mugabe, promising to revive the economy and repair strained relations with the west.
Mugabe, 92, has been president since 1987. Mujuru, 60, was his deputy for a decade, and was seen as his likely successor until he fired her in 2014, accusing her of leading a plot to oust him.
Analysis Joice Mujuru: the woman threatening to topple Robert Mugabe’s ruling party Zimbabwe’s former vice president has launched a manifesto and is mounting a serious challenge to the 91-year-old’s rule.
In her first public address since then, she said the new Zimbabwe People First party would bring jobs and review the ruling Zanu-PF party’s divisive black economic empowerment laws, which critics say have scared off investors.
She said she was open to alliances with other opposition groups before the 2018 presidential elections.
“Today we confirm our existence as a viable, inclusive homegrown political party,” Mujuru, she said to cheers from supporters on Tuesday. “We are not fighting one man but a system, that system which is unjust.”
Zanu-PF national commissar, Saviour Kasukuwere, described Mujuru’s party as a “gathering of losers”.
Zimbabwe is struggling to emerge from a deep recession that shrank its economy by nearly half during the decade to 2008.[Source: The Guardian]