Zimbabwe's Mnangagwa Says Mugabe Can No Longer Walk

Former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe holds a press briefing at his residence in Harare

Former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe holds a press briefing at his residence in Harare

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe attended a university graduation ceremony today, making a defiant first public appearance since the military takeover that appeared to signal the end of his 37-year reign.

Robert Mugabe, a former president of Zimbabwe who was the world's oldest head of state before he was ousted from power past year, is no longer able to walk due to declining health, his successor said Saturday.

Mnangagwa told a Zanu PF rally in Zvimba's Murombedzi area that Mugabe was receiving medical treatment in Singapore and would return home this week.

Mr Mnangagwa became head of state a year ago after Mr Mugabe was ousted following the intervention of the army.

Mnangagwa said the former leader had planned to return to Zimbabwe on October 15, but he was not feeling well.

"We are looking after him", Mnangagwa added, labelling Mugabe as, "the founding father of free Zimbabwe".

He reiterated his respect for his mentor, making it clear that Mugabe was the undisputed founding father of independent Zimbabwe.

Zimbabwe's former president Robert Mugabe gestures during a news conference at his private residence nicknamed "Blue Roof" in Harare, Zimbabwe, July 29, 2018.

He did not say what treatment Mugabe had been undergoing.

After taking over from him past year, Mr Mnangagwa won a disputed presidential election in July.

Mr Mnangagwa has vowed to revive Zimbabwe's weak economy by trying to attract desperately needed foreign investment.

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