Zimbabweans have assembled in the streets of the capital, Harare, this morning, to affirm the end of the era of Robert Mugabe in the African nation.
In an way, it's a sad ending to a strongman, who once earned the respect of hoards of people in Zimbabwe, the wider Africa and the broader world, for his early visions of independence, social justice, national development, African unity as well as for his exploits toward the decolonization of Africa.
A hero, a revolutionary and a Pan-Africanist, Robert Mugabe was idolized for his opposition and fight against white-minority rule in the former Rhodesia. But by 1996 when he married a woman, Grace Mugabe, who was almost half his age, support for Mugabe began to dwindle.
At the over-the-hill age of 93, up until Wednesday, Mugabe still continued to cling to power in Zimbabwe. His firing of his vice-president a week earlier, and the allegations of treason against the army chief, who warned the elderly president, the armed forces would not stand idly, as Mugabe, via Grace Mugabe, dismantled the former revolutionaries, who stood in-waiting to the leadership, while the Nonagenarian appeared to pave the way to anoint Grace Mugabe to the presidency.
On Wednesday, the Zimbabwe Defense Force(ZDF) seized power placing Mugabe and his wife under house arrest. Yesterday, the army allowed Mugabe the respectful opportunity to confer degrees upon graduates at Zimbabwe Open University, where he stands as chancellor. In a way, Mugabe was honored to conduct one-last official rite so that he could be perceived as leaving the presidency with some dignity.
Yet, in spite of talks to facilitate his resignation, the Nonagenarian has continued to resist his peaceful passing from power.
Today's gathering of protesting Zimbabweans in the streets to insist upon Mugabe's departure, is yet another mode of respect given to permit the elderly statesman to leave office with a better than diminished legacy still in tact.