Race for Mugabe's succession heats up

Harare - A new political party was launched on Thursday in Zimbabwe as the race for who will succeed 91-year-old President Robert Mugabe accelerated.

"Another Zimbabwe is possible," former finance minister Tendai Biti said on launching the Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) while accusing the ruling Zanu-PF of "failing to give the people of Zimbabwe a new opportunity".

Biti broke away from the main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) after it failed in 2013 to defeat Mugabe in elections for the third consecutive time. The opposition accused Mugabe, who has ruled the southern African country as prime minister or president since 1980, of rigging the poll.

Biti launched his party two days after former vice president Joice Mujuru unveiled a blueprint for another new party that is still to be officially founded.

Mujuru had earlier been tipped to succeed Mugabe, who then sacked her in December after accusing her of plotting to kill him.

Others seen as presidential hopefuls include Mugabe's current deputy, Emmerson Mnangagwa, and the president's wife, Grace.

The veteran leader claims to be in good health, but his frequent trips for medical treatment abroad have sparked speculation that he might not be able to contest the elections set for 2018.

Source http://www.news24.com/Africa/Zimbabwe/Race-for-Mugabes-succession-heats-...