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Zimbabwe's incoming leader Emmerson Mnangagwa: assassins are trying to 'eliminate' me

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 23/11/2017 11:10:00 Ben Morgan

Zimbabwe's incoming leader has revealed he was subject to an assassination attempt as he hailed a "new and unfolding democracy" in the country.

President-designate Emmerson Mnangagwa claimed he left Zimbabwe after being informed of plans to "eliminate me", adding that he was "subjected to poisoning" in August.

Addressing supporters hours after returning to cheering crowds in Harare, he pledged to create jobs and kickstart the faltering Zimbabwean economy.

The 75-year-old will be sworn in as president tomorrow - two weeks after he was sacked as vice president by Robert Mugabe and fled to South Africa.

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Mr Mnangagwa said: "I pledge myself to be your servant. I appeal to all genuine patriotic Zimbabweans to come together. We work together. No-one is more important than the other - we are all Zimbabweans.

"We want to grow our economy. We want peace in our country. We want jobs, jobs, jobs in our country."

He also praised the military and General Constantino Chiwenga, commander of Zimbabwe Defence Forces, for "managing this process very peacefully".

Mr Mnangagwa's dismissal on 6 October plunged the country into a political crisis and prompted military chiefs to take control of the capital and place Mr Mugabe under house arrest.

Nicknamed the "crocodile" because of his political cunning, Mr Mnangagwa met South African President Jacob Zuma before leaving for Zimbabwe.

The future of 93-year-old Mugabe, who resigned on Tuesday as lawmakers began impeaching him, is unclear.

He was said to remain in the capital, Harare, with former first lady Grace.

Some have questioned whether the former president had secured guarantees of protection, including immunity from prosecution.

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23. marraskuuta 2017 13:10:00 Categories: Evening Standard

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