November 2017 witnessed tumultuous events in Zimbabwean politics. After months of factional struggles between the Lacoste faction led by then Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, also nicknamed the crocodile, and the Generation 40 (G40) faction around President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace, Mugabe fired Mnangagwa on the 6th November. This followed Mugabe’s warning to Mnangagwa two days before when Grace Mugabe was booed at a rally in Bulawayo. The President’s wife threatened the embattled Vice President with the call that the ‘snake must be hit on the head.’ This was the First Lady’s decisive move in her bid for the Vice Presidency in the upcoming Zanu PF congress in December 2017.
The 2015 #RhodesMustFall protests – which started at the University of Cape Town – led to nationwide calls for the “decolonisation” of universities and free higher education. Zethu Matebeni gives her perspective.
The People’s Tribunal on Economic Crime in South Africa will open its first hearings this Saturday, 3 February, at Constitution Hill in Johannesburg. People’s Tribunals have been led by citizens and civil society for over four decades to address human rights abuses and war crimes in many contexts, including Palestine and Indonesia. The South African People’s Tribunal on Economic Crime will be the first tribunal of its kind to focus primarily on economic crimes and corruption.
Which African leaders qualify as an icon? Perhaps this is always a controversial question, but it was much easier to answer, say, 25 years ago, when the public memories of Pan-Africanist champions such as Kwame Nkrumah and Julius Nyerere were still fresh, Nelson Mandela had just walked out of prison, and Robert Mugabe was a widely respected leader.
Both the Mugabe’s succession plan and Mnangagwa’s long held Presidential ambitions have been in play for some time. While they have coincided in their strategic intent, at some point the final confrontation between the two was always on the cards.