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Mugabe appoints Mnangagwa as new VP

Emmerson Mnangagwa, pictured in Harare on 2008, is in pole position to be Zimbabwe's next president after his promotion to vice presidentZimbabwean President Robert Mugabe on Wednesday named hardliner Emmerson Mnangagwa as his vice president, putting the former justice minister in pole position to succeed the veteran leader. Mugabe announced the appointment at the headquarters of his ruling ZANU-PF party to loud applause, a move that comes just days after he sacked one-time presidential hopeful turned rival Joice Mujuru as vice president in a major purge. Nicknamed “Ngwena” (The Crocodile) because of his ruthlessness, Mnangagwa has held various senior posts in the country’s defence and internal security apparatus. The appointment caps a mass purge of rivals by the 90-year-old Mugabe in a bid to end fierce feuding within the ruling ZANU-PF party over who will eventually succeed him.

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