A mysterious Zimbabwean party insider with a bounty on his head for anonymous postings within the country wrote yesterday that President Robert Mugabe had collapsed in illness, and that security around the capitol had been tightened.
The post from the person known only as Baba Jukwa, an insider in the ruling Zanu-PF party, reported the rumor while noting that Mugabe’s press secretary, George Charamba, denied that the President was ill.
A cable from June 2008 leaked by WikiLeaks in 2012 suggested that the 90-year-old dictator has terminal prostate cancer. Mugabe won re-election last year in a ballot that the United States declared flawed in August, leading to the continuation of tight sanctions against Mugabe’s government which, along with catastrophic mismanagement and corruption, have destroyed the once-vibrant country’s economy.
Baba Jukwa has more than 300,000 Facebook followers, and a bounty of about $300,000 by Mugabe’s regime for the identity of the blogger or bloggers. Among Baba Jukwa’s reportorial successes, the blogger predicted the assassination of Edward Chininga, a member of the Zimbabwean parliament who died in a suspicious road accident a short while later.