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Former President Mugabe: Gone but not forgotten, as he turns 95



Robert G Mugabe

Robert Mugabe may no longer be president, but vestiges of his rule still remain in Zimbabwe.

Two streets in the capital city of Harare and the second-largest city, Bulawayo, are named after him. In early November 2017, the main airport in Harare was renamed in his honour to Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport.

The joke on the streets of Harare at the time was that the “honour” was fitting for Mugabe, as he was frequently airborne and never at home. In fact, he had become the airport’s number one traveller.

In supermarkets, products from Mugabe’s dairy business, which are branded “Alpha and Omega”, are in the refrigerators and make their way into the baskets of shoppers. His dairy farm produces ice cream, yoghurt and milk.

On Thursday, citizens were again reminded of the former strongman, who was in power for 37 years before his rule was abruptly cut short by a military coup: he turned 95.

His birthday is officially recognised as a public holiday. The recognition came after a push by the Zanu-PF Youth League, which wanted an honour, similar to those in neighbouring countries, bestowed on Mugabe.

The youth league at the time cited the recognition South Africa gives to Nelson Mandela and Botswana to Sir Seretse Khama, the respective founding fathers.

But since his removal from office, the spectacle and fanfare that usually accompanied Mugabe’s birthday is gone and not even leaders of the youth league, once his most ardent defenders, still stand by him.

Godfrey Tsenengamu, the political commissar for the youth league, said no major public event was lined up for Mugabe’s birthday.

“As the national youth league, so far we have not organised anything nationally,” he said.

Jealousy Mawarire, the spokesman for the National Patriotic Front and Robert and Grace Mugabe’s spokesman, hinted that a private function might be hosted at the Blue Roof mansion, Mugabe’s private residence in Borrowdale, Harare, this weekend.

“If there is something official I will let you know,” he said.

However, it was confirmed from a person who received an invite that a private dinner function would indeed be held at the Mugabe house this weekend to celebrate his birthday.

Away from the public glare, only his Gushungo Holdings company placed two full-page advertisements in the private media today to congratulate him on turning 95.

Traditionally, state media would have run swathes of supplements on his birthday. Parastatals, government ministries and companies would fall over each other advertising congratulatory messages, a huge financial spin-off for the media. Failure by any big entities to congratulate the president on his birthday was frowned upon as a sign of disloyalty.

The annual interview Mugabe usually gave to the state broadcaster, the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation, on the eve of his birthday has disappeared from television screens. Although often treated with kid gloves by the reporter conducting the interview, the media keenly followed Mugabe’s birthday interview to tap into his thinking on a wide range of issues, particularly the succession question, which plagued Zanu-PF in the final years of his rule.

Jacob Mafume, the national spokesperson for the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), said the sidelining of Mugabe by the state showed “how the mighty have fallen”.

Now, 15 months after his removal from office, memories of Mugabe are mixed on the occasion of his birthday.

The economic sting which is prevailing in the country has made some citizens longingly look back at the days Mugabe was in charge. Inflation is at 56.9%, the highest in a decade. International data and forecasting group Trading Economics expects it to reach 70% by the end of March.

Blessed Zhou, a vendor who plies his trade outside a liquor store along Harare Street, is one of those who told TimesLIVE that he misses Mugabe.

“We remember him, Mugabe, as a caring president, because he allowed us to sell our wares in the streets. Now we are being chased away by the military and police daily,” said Zhou.

“Mugabe empowered us to be self-sufficient, but this so-called new dispensation is disempowering us. I am not afraid to say we miss Mugabe. Police now patrol this street three times a day. We can’t breathe.”

Nelson Chamisa, the MDC president, earlier this week said Mugabe, at his worst, was not like President Emmerson Mnangagwa. Last month, the army was deployed to quell protests which broke out following a fuel price hike.

Human rights groups have put the death toll at 17 and estimate that more than 1,000 people suffered various human rights violations. Chamisa made the comments to reporters at the trial of Tendai Biti, the MDC’s deputy chairman.

“We are also aware of the targeting of many of our leaders across the country… lawyers and doctors, which is quite disturbing, because even Mugabe, at his worst, was not this rabid. We never saw attacks and persecution of lawyers and doctors,” said Chamisa.

Mugabe is gone but is still hard to forget in Zimbabwe.

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Zimbabwean Drivers in the UK: Converting Your License? The Ministry of Transport Addresses Your Questions



Zimbabwean Drivers Licence to UK Licence

Recently, the Zimbabwe Ministry of Transport addressed the rising concerns about converting Zimbabwean driver’s licenses to British driver’s licenses. They shared an official statement on social media that provided answers to several crucial questions raised by Zimbabwean drivers.

Recognition of Zimbabwean Driver’s License by the British Government

One of the key questions addressed in the statement is whether the British Government still recognises the Zimbabwean driver’s license. The response was affirmative, confirming that Zimbabwean licenses are still recognised.

However, there have been unconfirmed reports of some Zimbabweans using counterfeit metal driver’s licenses in the UK. The drivers reportedly end up being involved or causing road traffic accidents

This has prompted the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) in the UK to require Certificates of Competency. These certificates are now part of the conversion process

Certificate of Competency Requirements

A question commonly asked by individuals who have lost their Certificate of Competency, which is now required for conversion, was also addressed.

The Ministry explained that the current system does not provide for duplicate Certificates of Competency due to their limited validity of 30 days.

The Ministry is actively engaging with the DVLA to reconsider this requirement.

Class Conversion and Downgrading

The statement addressed concerns from individuals who have class 2 driver’s licenses but wish to convert to classes 4 and 5, as opposed to being limited to class 2. The DVLA’s hesitation stems from doubts about the skills of many class 2 drivers who may not have undergone essential tests. To address this, the Ministry is facilitating testing for class four licenses, ensuring that drivers are competent for their desired class.

The Ministry has emphasised the importance of avoiding the use of fake Certificates of Competency. It strongly warns against presenting counterfeit certificates to the DVLA or any licensing authority as this may result in the revocation of valid driver’s licenses. The Ministry further urges applicants to follow the correct procedures for license conversion and avoid any illicit means.

Contacting CVR for License Verification

Concerns about the DVLA’s ability to contact the Central Vehicle Registry (CVR) for license verification were also addressed. The Ministry assured the public that CVR maintains regular communication with DVLA.

To assist with license verification, citizens were provided with contact information for CVR via email addresses:,, and

Additionally, individuals were encouraged to seek assistance from their respective embassies if needed.

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Public Outcry Grows Over Mnangagwa’s Appointments of Family Members as Deputy Ministers




On Monday, President Emmerson Mnangagwa was accused of nepotism for appointing his son, David Kudakwashe Mnangagwa, as the deputy finance minister in his new cabinet, after a controversial re-election. David will be working under finance minister Mthuli Cube. Additionally, the president’s nephew, Tongai Mafidhi Mnangagwa, was named as the deputy minister of tourism and hospitality.

According to Fadzayi Mahere, a member of the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC), the cabinet of Mnangagwa is unacceptable. Mahere stated that it is a combination of illegitimacy, corruption, violence, nepotism, incompetence, and sex scandals. She added that it lacks the ethical leadership that Zimbabweans need and deserve. It is no surprise that the national mood is dismal.

Mnangagwa appointed Christopher and Monica Mutsvangwa as ministers. Christopher will lead the new ministry of Veterans of Liberation, while Monica will be the minister of Women’s Affairs and SMEs.

David Mnangagwa graduated from the University of Zimbabwe with a law degree. He was elected to parliament through the youth quota system, listed on a Zanu PF party roster from the Midlands province. Mnangagwa is believed to have almost two dozen children.

Tongai, meanwhile, is the Zanu PF MP for Hunyani constituency. His late father, David, was Mnangagwa’s young brother.

On Monday, sources reported that Mnangagwa is contemplating bestowing an official role on his son, Emmerson Junior, in his office. According to the source, Junior has already attended some of the president’s meetings with foreign investors, which has been an uncomfortable situation. Mnangagwa aims to regularise this arrangement by giving Junior an official position, such as an adviser or director.

On August 23rd, the 80-year-old Mnangagwa was declared the winner of the election amidst opposition allegations that the vote was fraudulent. He is now serving his second and final term as president, becoming another addition to the list of African leaders who have established political dynasties.

In Congo-Brazzaville, President Denis Sassou-Nguesso appointed his son Denis-Christel as a cabinet minister, a move that revived media speculation that he had a dynastic succession in mind.

Teodoro Obiang, President of Equatorial Guinea, appointed his son, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, as Vice President. He has been in power since removing his uncle Francisco Macías Nguema in 1979.

The former President of Gabon, Ali Bongo Ondimba, is the son of Omar Bongo who held the position from 1967 to 2009. Similarly, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Joseph Kabila succeeded his father, Laurent-Désiré, after his assassination and remained as the head of state for 17 years.

Rwandan President Paul Kagame has appointed his daughter Ange Kagame as the deputy executive director of the Strategy and Policy Unit in the Office of the President.

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The Lion King Musical The Lion King Tickets Lyceum Theatre




The Lion King London Tickets

What’s on at the Lyceum Theatre box office London events, The Lion King London tickets. Book tickets with Disney’s The Lion King and enjoy the Lyceum Theatre Stalls view, Royal Circle, or Grand Circle view. Click here to book Lion tickets online now and save time

Now in its 24th year at London’s Lyceum Theatre, THE LION KING will blow you away.

The Lion King tickets in London can be purchased from different online booking agencies or from ticket booths in London that normally have different ticket offers.

Disney’s The Lion King London tickets can also be purchased directly from the Lyceum Theatre box office. Contact the Lyceum Theatre London to Book Lion King tickets online or by phone number 0207 492 0834.

Contact our dedicated theatre experts team for group booking requests, Lion King theatre break packages, or any other theatre booking inquiries.

The Lion King London tickets special deals and discounts at The Lyceum Theatre box office in London.

The Lion King musical is set against the majesty of the Serengeti Plains and the evocative rhythms of Africa, Disney’s multi-award-winning musical ‘The Lion King’ will redefine your expectations of theatre.

The Lion King musical score, with songs by Elton John and Tim Rice, was complemented by Garth Fagan’s choreography, drawing from African ritual dance.

Taymor worked with costume/puppet director Michael Curry to transform the actors into life-sized animal artworks through imaginative costume designs.

The Lion King’s plot follows Simba, who is convinced by his evil Uncle Scar that he is responsible for the death of his father, Mufasa, who is king. Little Simba flees Pride Rock and grows up in isolation, with the help of a flatulent hog and whiny meerkat.

Eventually, Simba returns home to fight his evil uncle and accepts his rightful role as heir to the throne.

PLEASE NOTE: strobe lighting is used several times during the performance of The Lion King.

For good seats at the Lyceum Theatre, it is advised to avoid restricted view seats in the Stalls, Dress/Royal Circle, and Upper Circle. The Stalls are split into centre blocks and two narrow blocks by aisles.

The Dress Circle overhangs the stalls in row R so it might be difficult to enjoy The Lion King from there.

To get an amazing view of the Lion King performance in the stalls, it is advisable to sit from rows D to P. In the Dress Circle, one can get an amazing view from rows A to L, and the centre block offers an absolutely fantastic view.

When buying last-minute Lion King tickets it is advisable to ask if they are clear-view tickets otherwise the wonderful Lion King experience will be spoiled.

The Lyceum Theatre is a 2,100-seat West End theatre located in the City of Westminster, on Wellington Street, just off the Strand. The origins of the theatre date to 1765.

More answers to these questions are below: The Lion King, Lyceum Theatre phone number, Lyceum Theatre seating plan, Lyceum Theatre nearest tube, Lyceum Theatre box office, Lyceum Theatre London address, Lyceum Theatre events, Lion King London tickets, Lyceum Theatre dress code. Lyceum Theatre box office contact number.

Lyceum Theatre Box Office FAQs

The Lyceum Theatre is a 2,100-seat West End theatre located in the City of Westminster, at 21 Wellington Street, London, WC2E 7RQ just off the Strand.

What is the Lion King London Lyceum running time?

The Lion King’s running time is 2 hours 30 minutes

Where is the Lion King Theatre in London?

The Lion King. Lyceum Theatre, London

Where is the Lyceum Theatre box office?

Lyceum Theatre’s box office is located inside the theatre building on Wellington Street and is open Monday 10 am – 6 pm, Tuesday to Saturday 10 am-8 pm and Sunday 11 am-3 pm.

Can you buy Lion King tickets at the box office?

You may purchase tickets to THE LION KING at the box office, online, or by phone.

What is the Lyceum Theatre box office postcode?


What is the Lyceum Theatre box office contact phone number?
Buy tickets by phone. If you would like to buy tickets over the phone, the Lyceum Theatre box office can be reached on 0844 8717627.

Where can I find the Lion King London Lyceum Theatre seating plan?
– Click here to view the Lyceum Theatre seating plan

What restaurants are near the Lyceum Theatre, London?
-Sophie’s Steakhouse, Fire and Stone, Cafe des Amis and Christopher’s American Grill

What is the Lyceum Theatre London address?
21 Wellington Street, London, WC2E 7RQ

What are the best seats in the Lyceum Theatre?
The Stalls seats are quite close to the stage and they do have the best seats in the house.

The stall seats are quite wonderful, especially during the opening score ‘The Circle of Life.

The top seats are in the centre section from rows A to R.

The Royal Circle or Dress Circle is in the tier above the Stalls and also offers very good seats, especially from row A to E.The Grand Circle is above the Royal Circle and one can still get a fairly good view from row B.

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