The Financial Express

Zimbabweans celebrate as Mugabe era nears end

| Updated: November 21, 2017 15:46:41

Zimbabweans celebrate as Mugabe era nears end

Tens of thousands of Zimbabweans took to the streets of Harare on Saturday to demand the resignation of President Robert Mugabe.

They flooded the streets of the capital, singing, dancing and hugging soldiers in an outpouring of elation at the expected fall of their leader of the last 37 years.

This situation could spell the political end for the 93-year-old leader who has ruled the country for nearly four decades.

But Mugabe was still refusing to step down on Saturday, said an official with direct knowledge of the ongoing negotiations between the President and the military.

The atmosphere on the streets of the south African nation's capital was exciting. Thousands of people were waving placards with slogans like "Go, Go, Our General" and "No to Mugabe Dynasty."

People also waved Zimbabwean flags while others ran alongside army tanks and hugged soldiers to show their gratitude.

Any policeman was not seen at the protest. It was originally called by the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association.

Association's Chairperson Christopher Mutsvangwa gave an ultimatum for resignation of Mugabe by Saturday.

"Between now and tomorrow (on Saturday), we are giving a very strong warning to Mugabe and his wife… He won’t be allowed to continue," said

"The whole nation is celebrating today. We are finally getting rid of the old man," said Tanashe, a Harare resident who declined to provide a second name.

Mugabe was meeting Saturday with army chief Gen. Constantino Chiwenga to discuss what happens next, the source said.

The army chief is pushing for Mugabe to step down and for an interim president to take over, the source said.

According to CNN, a conference of the ruling ZANU-PF party will take place in December. Former Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa may become leader of the party and President of the country until elections next year, the source said.

ZANU-PF called for Mugabe to resign on Friday, the main state newspaper The Herald reported. It said party branches in all 10 provinces were also calling for the resignation of Grace Mugabe.

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