BreakingNews 6/3/15 - Robert Mugabe: Double Celebration At 91?

[ Masterweb Reports: Ugochukwu Ejinkeonye Reports ] - Last Saturday (February 21, 2015), President Robert Mugabe of  Zimbabwe , the oldest head of state on planet earth, turned 91. He has ruled  Zimbabwe for 35 years – since 1980 when the country gained independence from  Britain.
 
For many years now, Mugabe’s birthday bash has become a big, lavish event in Zimbabwe – a country where majority of its 14 million people live below the poverty level. This year’s celebrations which will be held a week later on February 28 will, according to reports take place at a “championship golf course at Elephant Hills, a plush hotel resort with spa, pool and tennis courts near the Victoria Falls .”  
 
The ceremony is estimated to cost about US$1million (one million dollars) and part of the money is being sourced from the citizens. There were even reports that some impoverished villagers are also being compelled to “freely donate” money so that Mugabe could have his big party.  Zimbabwe’s Daily News quotes the head of the Progressive Teachers’  Union, Mr. Raymond Majongwe, as saying that teachers all over the country are being forced to part with between one to ten dollars (depending on the status of the school where one is teaching) to fund the very expensive feast. This has however, been denied by Tongai Kasukuwere, the Finance Secretary of the ruling Zanu-PF’s Youth League who urged anyone “being forced to donate to the gala [to] report to the police.”
 
The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has, however, dismissed Mugabe’s party as an “obscene jamboree.”
 
“As the MDC, we are greatly perturbed to learn that instead of focusing on more serious and pressing national issues such as rehabilitating the country’s collapsed public health delivery system as well as the renovation of the nation’s dilapidated road and rail infrastructure, Zanu-PF has seen it fit to squeeze the sum of US$I million from the country’s ailing business sector in order to bankroll the nonagenarian’s birthday jamboree in the resort town of Victoria Falls…The majority of the people of Zimbabwe are living in penury, squalor and destitution, and thus, it would be grossly offensive for Robert Mugabe and a few of his hangers – on to wine and dine…on Saturday, February 28,  2015,”  MDC spokesman, Obert Chaurura Gutu, said in a statement in Harare.
 
If indeed Mugabe is having his birthday party on Saturday as scheduled, would move without some help from his car to his seat and freely acknowledge greetings from the 22, 000 selected guests expected at the ceremony, then it means that he has had a remarkably quick recovery from thefall he experienced recently. On February 4, Mugabe had tripped on a red carpeted staircase and came crashing down to the ground on his hands and knees as he descended a podium at the Harare International Airport after addressing a crowd of supporters that had come to welcome him on his return from Addis Ababa, where he had just been made the new Chair of the African Union (AU).
 
There were fears that given his age, it would take quite some time before his doctors and physiotherapists would certify him fit for public activity given the predictable effect of such a fall on his knees and ankle bones. But, surprisingly, Mugabe was able to attend the meeting of the Southern African Development Community in  Pretoria last Friday where he expressed joy that he had attained the age of 91.
 
“I'm very happy to be that age,” he said. “I am happy that God has looked after me." 
Another exciting news for the nonagenarian is the return of his 49-year-old dear wife, closest ally and “power behind the throne,” Grace Mugabe, from Singapore on Sunday February 15 after two months of medical treatment for an undisclosed ailment. While she away, speculations were rife about the state of her health including that she was at some point in coma. Some reports, however, claimed that she had a surgery for appendix. Her return also intensified the rumours and reports that she had been anointed Mugabe’s successor. Whatever is the case, Mrs. Mugabe will share the moment with her husband on Saturday as he blows out the 91 candles that would surely be lighted on his usually very large birthday cake.
 
But the biggest news for Mugabe this season may, perhaps, be what is now being described in the media as his “victory” over the West, especially, the European Union (EU), which announced two weeks ago that it has resumed direct aid to  Zimbabwe and lifted the travel ban imposed on some key members of the Zimbabwean government. For many years now, Mugabe has accused the EU led by  Britain , and the  United States of trying to achieve what he calls a “regime change” in  Zimbabwe . The aim, he maintained was to replace him with a stooge who would reverse the “land reforms” his government had undertaken which saw large farmlands which had been in the hands of a tiny minority of white settlers (to the great disadvantage of the vast majority of black Zimbabweans) “recovered” and redistributed.
 
Now that the EU is relaxing its sanctions without confirming any conviction that any improvements have been recorded on Mugabe’s poor human rights records, corruption and anti-democratic actions, which it had always cited as reasons for those sanctions, analysts across the world would be left wondering if the EU is not being driven by enlightened self interest to undertake this self-deprecating somersault?   
 
In 2012, when the EU first announced its intention to relax the sanctions, a reader on a South African news site posted this
 
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