Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe has said he now accepts President Emmerson Mnangagwa as the country’s legitimate leader

Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe has said he now accepts President Emmerson Mnangagwa as the country’s legitimate leader after initially accusing him of leading a “disgraceful” de facto coup that ended his near four-decades rule in 2017.

On the eve of the July 30 vote, Mugabe said he would vote for the opposition to remove Mnangagwa’s “military government”, as the 94-year-old leader expressed bitterness and turned against his one-time allies in the ruling ZANU-PF party.

But at a funeral wake of his mother-in-law, Mugabe said Mnangagwa’s victory, which is still disputed by his main opponent Nelson Chamisa, made him a legitimate president.

Mugabe’s forced resignation divided ZANU-PF and created mistrust between the army on one side and the police and intelligence agency on the other, but the rapprochement could help overcome those differences and rally others behind Mnangagwa.

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