VICE-Presidents Emmerson Mnangagwa and Phelekezela Mphoko took turns to shower President Robert Mugabe with superlatives before the 90-year-old leader’s fall from a podium at Harare International Airport on Wednesday.
BY MOSES MATENGA
The two described Mugabe as “mountain of mountains”, “head above all heads” and a “fountain of knowledge” among other terms in what observers say was taking the bootlicking of the President a notch higher.
In his welcome remarks, Mnangagwa said Africa was in for sound leadership from Mugabe.
“As Zimbabwe, we are proud. You have your head above all heads, you are a mountain of mountains. I want you to greet the people and tell them who rules Africa,” Mnangagwa said.
“I saw you sitting in your African Union office and said ‘now listen, the man is now running Africa’. Your first statement was to say Africa is for Africans and that is the spirit of the founding fathers,” he added before Mugabe made his way to the podium. Mphoko, in a bid to compete with Mnangagwa, ordered bussed Zanu PF supporters with placards to raise them up and took his time to read them one by one. He then concluded that that all the words written on the placards were a true reflection of the “iconic” President.
“I want to teach you this slogan, if I say ‘dura reruzivo’ (fountain of knowledge) you say VaMugabe,” Mphoko said.
Bootlicking has been the art of survival in Zanu PF with Mugabe in most instances being the recipient of statements praising him for his “visionary leadership, iconic wisdom” among other accolades.
Most notable instances where senior government officials showered Mugabe with praises include when he was likened to powdered milk “Cremora” by former party secretary for the commissariat Webster Shamu while Transport minister Obert Mpofu reportedly signed off his letters to Mugabe as “your ever-obedient son”.