Mugabe turns 93, vowing to rule on in Zimbabwe

The union, which also upheld sanctions on the Zimbabwe Defence Industries (ZDI), announced in a statement that its council took the position on February 21 - coinciding with the nonagenarian's birthday - and the restrictive measures will stay until February 20, 2018. I don't know how the Mexicans will take it.

In an interview marking his birthday shown on state broadcaster ZBC, Mr Mugabe noted that his wife's remarks were shown on television.

"We had that galloping inflation and we thought of giving it up and adopting the USA dollar...we are a multi-currency country", said Mugabe. It's the opposite. They want me to stand for elections'.

The 51-year-old first lady has hotly defended her husband against critics who say it is time for him to step down, declaring last week that the ruling party should field him as a corpse if he dies before the election.

Speaking to Zimbabwe national TV to mark his 93rd birthday, Mugabe said he was proud that "most of the land that used to be in the hands of the settlers is now in the hands of our own people".

Malema said at the time that Mugabe was "incapable of discharging his duties" and called on members of the ruling Zanu-PF party to be fearless enough to tell the nonagenarian to go.

Grace, 51, was appointed head of the ruling party's women's wing in a surprise move that could make her a possible successor to Mugabe.

He described her as "well-seasoned" and 'a very strong character'.

Ncube yesterday told Southern Eye that government business was now literally at a standstill because of the event, adding this had been the trend since independence in 1980.

"The volume of wishes for the president to stand, the number of people who will be disappointed is galore and I don't want to disappoint them", he said.

He said he had managed to hold a discussion with his Chinese counterpart, President Xi Jinping, during his annual vacation in January where he reinforced the need to accelerate the economic programmes.

During the interview, Mr Mugabe often gestured to emphasise points.

  • Jon Douglas