President Mnangagwa Appoints Son, Nephew, in Newly Appointed Cabinet


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The newly re-elected Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa, 80, swore in his new cabinet on Tuesday, September 12, 2023, after appointing one of his sons and one of his nephews to deputy minister positions.

The main opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) party members that rejected his victory in the elections that were held last month, August 2023, were not given any ministerial positions.

President Mnangagwa’s cabinet was largely made up of his loyalists from his ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) party. The move to appoint his 34-year-old son David Kudakwashe Mnangagwa as Deputy Finance Minister and his nephew Tongai Mnangagwa as Deputy Tourism Minister was criticised by the opposition.

President Mnangagwa retained many of his old ministers in his new cabinet but also included several younger members of ZANU-PF.

In a statement, CCC’s Spokesperson, Promise Mkwananzi, said that President Mnangagwa’s appointing of his family members was dangerously worrying and improper.

“Rather than think of the national plight, Mr. Mnangagwa has set up an infrastructure to feed his family,” Mkwananzi said.

President Mnangagwa collected 52.6% of the vote in August 2023 to win re-election. The constitution mandates that this should be his second and last five-year term as president of the southern African nation. However, the credibility of the vote was also questioned by both Western and African observers.

There have been suggestions from within Mnangagwa’s party that the constitution should be changed to allow him to contest for the presidency again.

Although ZANU-PF retained its parliamentary majority, the constitution cannot be changed without the cooperation of the opposition.

Observers criticised the 2023 Zimbabwean general elections, citing an atmosphere of intimidation against the opposition before and during the vote, harsh security laws, the banning of opposition meetings and rallies, public media bias, and other irregularities.

President Manangagwa has ignored calls by the CCC for fresh elections supervised by neighbouring countries.

ZANU-PF is a political organisation that has been the ruling party of Zimbabwe since its independence in 1980.

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