Emmerson Mnangagwa, the man who was recently re-elected as Zimbabwe’s president, is fiercely criticized after he appointed his son and nephew to important ministerial posts this week.
Mnangagwa swore in his new cabinet on Tuesday. Mnangagwa’s son, David Kudakwashe Mnangagwa, was sworn in as deputy finance minister. His nephew, Tongai Mnangagwa, holds the post of Deputy Minister of Tourism.
David Mnangagwa says his appointment came as a shock. “Yesterday is still unbelievable to me,” he told reporters after the swearing-in.
He will serve under Mthuli Ncube, who critics say is largely responsible for the country’s economic collapse and sky-high inflation, but has nonetheless retained his ministerial post.
Meanwhile, the opposition labels Mnangagwa’s newly appointed cabinet as “the worst since independence”.
“Consisting of (Mnangagwa’s) friends, family, loyalists and people who are the least qualified, the cabinet is the weakest since Zimbabwe’s independence in 1980,” said Promise Mkwananzi, a spokesperson for the opposition party the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC). said.
Mnangagwa, whose ZANU-PF party has been in power for more than four decades, first came to power after a coup that ousted late leader Robert Mugabe in 2017. Mnangagwa narrowly won the presidential election a year later.
Mnangagwa was re-elected on 23 August this year, with 52.6% of the vote against 44% for the CCC leader, Nelson Chamisa.
The CCC labeled the result as “erroneous, chaotic and illegal” and demanded a new election.
Regional and international observers also say that numerous irregularities slipped in during this year’s elections in Zimbabwe.