Editor's note

Former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe’s remains arrived in his home country yesterday, ahead of his funeral next week. Mugabe, 95, died in a Singapore hospital on 6 September. His death has yielded very different reactions: his supporters and admirers hailed him as a pan African liberator who stood up to colonial powers, while his opponents decried him as a "monster". Roger Southall examines this contested legacy, while David Moore outlines Mugabe's failures.

Meanwhile, Zimbabwe is battling enormous political and economic pressures. Tapiwa Chagonda argues that a government of national unity could offer at least part of the solution to the nation's crisis. Brian Raftopoulos, meanwhile, says that President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s twin strategy of coercion and dialogue is doing more harm than good. And Robert Rotberg explains why Mnangagwa just can't mend the country's economic woes.

Thabo Leshilo

Politics + Society Editor

Robert Mugabe during his swearing-in ceremony in Harare, 2008. The former Zimbabwean president has died aged 95. EPA-EFE

Robert Mugabe: as divisive in death as he was in life

Roger Southall, University of the Witwatersrand

Where should we place Mugabe among the pantheon of African nationalists who led their countries to independence?

Robert Gabriel Mugabe: a man whose list of failures is legion

David B. Moore, University of Johannesburg

Robert Mugabe's years of playing one group off against the other to favour himself finally wore too thin in 2017.

Repression and dialogue in Zimbabwe: twin strategies that aren’t working

Brian Raftopoulos, University of the Free State

The Mnangagwa regime's coercive acts are a continuation of the violence and brutality of the Mugabe era, while he seeks global re-engagement and selective national dialogue.

Zimbabwe’s deepening crisis: time for second government of national unity?

Tapiwa Chagonda, University of Johannesburg

It's time for a new approach as it becomes increasingly clear that protests won't topple the Zanu-PF government.

Zimbabwe’s economy is collapsing: why Mnangagwa doesn’t have the answers

Robert Rotberg, Harvard Kennedy School

Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration is struggling to overcome the national economic destruction wreaked on Zimbabwe over two decades under Robert Mugabe.


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