Monday, January 13, 2003
Zimwatch: False Dawn? - 13th January 2003, 23.00

It is too early to tell if there is a genuine move to 'retire' Mugabe by saner elements in ZANU-PF or if this was an attempt to bounce Mad Bob out to pasture whilst he was taking a vacation. Tonight, talk of a deal has been dismissed as "wishful thinking".

This is the first indication that talks may be taking place behind the scenes with South Africa acting as a broker in order to resolve the crisis. The story may indicate that Mugabe's successors, especially the handpicked Emmerson Mnangagwa, realise that there may be nothing left if they allow Zimbabwe's economy to decline even further.

This also may be one of the last chances for Mugabe to leave with his wealth and health intact. Otherwise, he may depart from his position in a box, as the Zimbabweans already realise the cost of his rule.


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