Mugabe, Africa's oldest leader, turns 93
Clad in party regalia, the youths were earlier on bused to the ZANU-PF provincial office at Fourth Street where they were addressed before setting-off for the city center with brooms and waste plastic bins singing songs denouncing Grace Mugabe foes as sell outs and bent at destroying. Those are things we should focus on: "addressing our economic challenges".
Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa is the perceived leader of one going by the name Lacoste, while Mugabe's wife is fighting in her own corner with mainly younger leaders calling themselves Generation 40.
"Given the president's age, any reasonable person would see that, at 92, turning 93, the future of the president is in the cemetery".
She has also vowed to use a wheelchair to transport him to election rallies if needed.
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Even as he grapples with the factions within his party, Mugabe has many other problems.
Mugabe may well hope that Trump will reconsider Zimbabwe's status as an global pariah state, perhaps even ending the sanctions first put in place by George W. Bush after the Zimbabwean president was accused of undermining democracy and stripping property from white farmers.
The main celebration will take place on Saturday, with a big party planned for him and his supporters in the Matopos, in the south of the country.
In 2009 he celebrated his 85th birthday with a lavish all-day party despite the fact that the country was then gripped by economic and health crises.
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Matabeleland was the scene of the 1983 Gukurahundi massacres of the Ndebele people, shortly after independence, when Mugabe's North Korean-trained troops cracked down on alleged dissidence from a minority tribe. In the past, he has said they were imposed to push him to abandon a policy of taking land from white farmers. The economy collapsed and Zimbabwe, once the breadbasket of southern Africa, had to import food.
Transparency International said in October Zimbabwe ranked poorly on corruption and was losing at least $1 billion (£806 million) annually to graft, with police and local government officials among the worst offenders.
People in Harare have been giving us their birthday thoughts for the President.
He and his Zanu-PF party say the economy has been undermined by western powers. "No, I think Zimbabweans are smarter than that, to know these things".
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