Harare – A top opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) official says President Emmerson Mnangagwa should not be underestimated, and is capable of turning around Zimbabwe’s fortunes.
Opinion is divided among opposition and rights activists over whether Mnangagwa can stabilise the economy, and safeguard civil liberties and democracy in the wake of Robert Mugabe’s ouster in November.
“The one thing I know about this man is that he is an operator and should not be underestimated,” MDC MP Eddie Cross wrote in the latest post on his blog.
Cross, who is also a MDC national executive member, said that one key element in Mnangagwa’s strategy was his knowledge that “the opposition is in shambles”.
“The other thing he knows full well is that only a democratically elected government will be recognised by the international community and recovery and reconstruction of the Zimbabwe state and economy is not possible without that.”
Added Cross: “Time alone will tell, but the early indications are that we will see very significant changes in 2018 and that our economy and maybe our country, will begin the long road back to where we should have been, but for the Mugabe era.”
Not everyone is convinced, even within the MDC. Writing on Twitter, the party’s secretary general Douglas Mwonzora criticised Mnangagwa for “fiscal indiscipline” and for appointing ex-army chief, Constantino Chiwenga as one of the two vice presidents.
“The appointment of Chiwenga as VP completes the militarisation of key state institutions by (Mnangagwa). Democracy is in the intensive care unit,” said Mwonzora.