Zanu PF Youths Push For Mnangagwa Third Presidential Term
22 February 2024
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Zanu PF Youths Advocate for President Mnangagwa’s Third Term on National Youth Day

22nd February 2024

By Wezhira Munya

Zanu PF youth members from across Zimbabwe convened at the Mushagashe Training Centre in Masvingo on February 21, 2024, to honor the birthday of former President Robert Gabriel Mugabe.

During preparations for Youth Day, a Zanu PF meeting featured a youth member from Masvingo province chanting, “President Mnangagwa will be there in 2030,” sparking online speculation about Mnangagwa’s potential bid for a third term.

At 81, Mnangagwa is currently in his second and final presidential term following disputed harmonized elections in August 2023.

However, there is a faction within Zanu PF advocating for his extended tenure, led by Vice President Kembo Mohadi, Masvingo Zanu-PF provincial chairperson Mr. Robson Mavhenyengwa, and Zanu PF Bikita South member of parliament.

At the Mushagashe event, Mr. Robson Mavhenyengwa, the Zanu PF Masvingo Provincial chairman, boldly declared Mnangagwa’s presidency in 2030, drawing mixed reactions from Zimbabweans.

However, critics, including the pro-Chiwenga faction, warn that another term under Mnangagwa’s leadership could exacerbate existing challenges such as poverty, unemployment, and high education and healthcare costs.

Support for Mnangagwa’s extended presidency was echoed by Zanu PF’s third vice president, Kembo Mohadi, and Zanu PF Bikita South member of parliament, Energy Mutodi, who hailed the slogan “2030 vaMnangagwa will be there” as a new rallying cry.

President Mnangagwa himself responded to the speculation, stating, “Those saying Mnangagwa will be there in 2030, was there any suggestion that I won’t be there? Only one person knows when I’m going, and that’s Jehovah.”

Despite these sentiments, Mnangagwa previously committed to respecting the constitution, which limits presidents to two terms, in a 2018 CNN interview.

Any attempt to extend Mnangagwa’s term beyond two requires a constitutional amendment, necessitating a two-thirds majority vote in both the National Assembly and the Senate, as well as approval in a national referendum, according to Zimbabwe’s Constitution.

Although Zanu PF currently holds a two-thirds majority in Parliament, cooperation from some opposition members would be needed in the Senate to pass such an amendment.

However, public rejection, as seen in 2000, could thwart these efforts.

Ultimately, the decision regarding Mnangagwa’s potential third term rests with the Zimbabwean people and the constitutional processes governing presidential term limits.