Zimbabwe: Mugabe At Graduation Ceremony, Moyo Missing

Al Jazeera English screenshot.
17 November 2017

President Robert Mugabe was Friday officiating at the Zimbabwe Open University graduation ceremony in Harare despite reportedly being under house arrest.

Missing from the event however, was higher education minister Jonathan Moyo who is usually by the president's side at such events.

In place of Moyo, who is believed to be one of the officials wanted by the military, was deputy higher education minister Godfrey Gandawa.

Also present at the event were the minister of state for Harare province Miriam Chikukwa, cyber security minister Patrick Chinamasa and counterpart Mike Bimha.

The usual police protection and presidential guard watched over the proceedings, giving an appearance of normalcy.

Mugabe appeared in public for the first time in several days Thursday shacking hands and smiling with the man who has reportedly toppled him from power on Wednesday.

The 93-year-old held talks with defence forces chief General Constantino Chiwenga and envoys dispatched by to Harare South African president Jacob Zuma.

His appearance at Friday's graduation ceremony adds another layer of confusion to the political situation in the country.

Observers speculated that the military Generals behind Wednesday's power grab are keen to maintain a façade of normalcy to fend off intervention by SADC and the African Union.

The two organisations have made clear that a coup would not be tolerated and urged a speedy return to a constitutional order.

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