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Robert Mugabe Wikileaks cables – Part Nineteen

President Robert Mugabe was prepared to step down after his defeat by Morgan Tsvangirai of the MDC-T in March 2008 but the Joint Operations Command told him to stay put.

According to the United States embassy in Harare a number of high-ranking Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front officials were concerned about their own futures so they asked Mugabe to stay on while preparing for a run-off which they had to win at all costs.

Key players in the JOC were Defence Forces Chief Constantine Chiwenga, Police Commissioner Augustine Chihuri, and Rural Housing Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Air Force Chief Perence Shiri  was responsible for military operations and security in northern Zimbabwe.

Army Commander Philip Sibanda was put in charge of the southern part of the country.

Two committees were formed to steer Zimbabwe toward the election.

The first was a campaign and logistics committee whose members included Patrick Chinamasa  then Justice Minister,  Saviour Kasukwere who was Deputy Youth Minister, Labour Minister Nicholas Goche, a representative of the Central Intelligence Organization and the military triumvirate of Chiwenga, Sibanda, and Chihuri.

The second committee on information and publicity, was chaired by Chinamasa, and included Webster Shamu who was Policy Implementation Minister, Chris Mutsvangwa,  and Bright Matonga  who was Deputy information  Minister.

Solomon Mujuru was sitting out ZANU-PF politics for the time being.

Below are the first 380 Wikileaks cables on Mugabe- 246 more to go.

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