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Tyrant Mugabe gone but tyranny remains – Zimbabwean opposition

Despite the cheers and the blaring of car horns that signaled the end of the Robert Mugabe era, the opposition in Zimbabwe say they are not guaranteed freedom because the system of oppression remains.

The 93-year-old announced his resignation in a letter to Parliament Tuesday, November 21, but the opposition has questioned whether the handover to his Vice, Emerson Mnangagwa to finish the rest of his term, will bring about real change in the country.

According to Secretary-General for the opposition Alliance for the People’s Agenda, Albert Gombo, “the resignation letter was ready technically in a drawer.”

“We are happy that a tyrant is gone, we are very excited [and] we are very, very happy. But the question that we ask is that; the tyrant is gone but is tyranny gone?”

Relating the current political events in Zimbabwe to popular American fantasy drama television series 'Game of Thrones', Mr. Gombo described Mr. Mugabe’s television address to the nation as “a rehearsed choreography” meant “for the camera and a show for the public opinion”.

Mr Mnangagwa, the opposition leader said, “is much the tyrant that Mugabe is,” doubting if he will be able to supervise a free, fair and transparent election to be conducted in September 2018.

“This is why we are calling on international observers to ensure the [2018] elections are conducted in a free and fair manner while we encourage Zimbabweans to turn out in their numbers and vote,” Mr. Gombo told Kojo Yankson, host of the Super Morning Show, Wednesday.

To him, the desire to see change come to Zimbabwe is “not about power; it is about erasing 37 years of a system that has systematically destroyed our country.”

“The same system that has replaced him created the climate of fear that kept Mugabe in power,” Mr. Gombo noted.

Morgan Tsvangirai

It is unclear if key opposition figure and former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai would be taking another shot at the presidency on the ticket of the Movement for Democratic Change.

This is because even within the opposition, there are calls for him to hand over to a new person ahead of next year's election, Gombo said.

Morgan Tsvangirai told the BBC Mr Mugabe should be allowed to "go and rest for his last days".

Same medication should be prescribed to Mr. Tsvangirai, he suggested in response to a question posed to him by Kojo Yankson.

"We’d like him [Tsvangirai] to rest and it is time for him to hand over the baton. He played a role; yes he has been very brave but it is time he also recognised his failing and he took a rest for the sake of the country," he said.