President Robert Mugabe, Africa’s longest serving president must have shocked the world when he poured a tribute for the outgoing Namibian president Hifikepunye Pohamba for a “smooth transfer of power.”
“Your legacy will forever guide those who will walk in your footsteps,” Mugabe said.
Like Mugabe, Pohamba, fought for his country’s independence, and has served two terms as Namibian president. He was first elected in 2004, and again in 2009. He has been succeeded by President-elect, Hage Geingob.
Pohamba was a founding member of the South West Africa People’s Organisation (Swapo), an armed movement that waged a decades-long campaign against South African rule.
Mugabe, also a former freedom fighter has been the only president Zimbabwe has known since its independence in 1980. He has refused to hand over power besides old age and ailing health.
Mugabe commended the Namibians for the smooth handing over of power “as if its from brother to another brother,” he said.
Mugabe also said Pohamba’s legacy would live forever as his predecessors would continue to benefit from his wisdom, experience and sacrifice.
However back home Mugabe faces tension as members of his ZANU PF party questioned his overstaying in power and this has created serious rifts with two powerful factions emerging.
Last year one faction led by the ousted former vice president Joice Mujuru was purged from party structures with some senior Zanu PF officials like former secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa and former spokesperson Rugare Gumbo being expelled.