Zimbabwe - Mugabe's Speech Leaves People Confused and Dejected

analysis

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe clung to the vestiges of office on Sunday, using a TV address to maintain he was still in power despite a military takeover and a mounting clamour for his autocratic 37-year rule to end. His address left many Zimbabweans confused after expectations were raised that he would resign following his removal as Zanu-PF leader earlier on Sunday. By MAYNARD MANYOWA and AFP.

Zimbabweans who had filed into clubs in Harare in anticipation of President Robert Mugabe's resignation were left disappointed on Sunday night.

"The (ruling Zanu-PF) party congress is due in a few weeks and I will preside over its processes," Mugabe said in an address broadcast live on television, pitching the country into deep uncertainty.

Many Zimbabweans had expected Mugabe, 93, to announce his resignation after the army seized power, opened the floodgates of citizen protest and his once-loyal party told him to quit.

Just ahead of Sunday's speech, crowds gathered in Harare's Africa Union Square under the light of the setting sun to chant against Mugabe and wave Zimbabwean flags.

"What we wanted was the government of Mugabe gone... out of the way by whatever means necessary," said demonstrator Thobekile Ncube.

But speaking slowly...

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