What's next for the Mugabes

Zimbabweans celebrate after President Robert Mugabe resigns in Harare, Zimbabwe on Nov 21, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

As Zimbabwe celebrates the end of Robert Mugabe's authoritarian rule, it is unclear what the next steps will be for the former president and his wife Grace.

The 93-year-old, who is said to have amassed a billion-dollar fortune, has not been seen in public since he gave a televised address on Sunday (Nov 19), and his and Grace's whereabouts are unknown, reported AFP.

The couple could stay on in Zimbabwe, even though Mr Mugabe is widely seen as the perpetrator of the country's financial ruin and violent suppression of dissent.

Nick Managwana, head of ruling party Zanu-PF in London, told British daily The Telegraph recently that Mr Mugabe would be welcome to remain, saying: "Zimbabweans are not a vengeful people".

Reuters reported on Thursday (Nov 23) that Mr Mugabe has been granted immunity from prosecution and assured that his safety would be protected in his home country.

The Telegraph reports that if the Mugabes leave Zimbabwe, they would choose to live in exile in South Africa, where they are said to own several lavish homes.

There has also been speculation in the media that Mr Mugabe could head east, to Singapore or Malaysia, both countries he has frequently visited for medical treatment.

Mr Mugabe's daughter Bona, 29, did her master's management degree in Singapore while Mrs Mugabe, dubbed "Gucci Grace" for her shopping sprees, has been known to spend thousands of dollars in the city state's boutique stores.

Meanwhile The Star reported that Malaysia's deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said on Sunday that Mr Mugabe was welcome to visit Malaysia for medical treatment.

"We have no objection. We do not interfere in the internal affairs of other countries," Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid said.

The Telegraph also listed other possible destinations for the Mugabes, including Dubai, where Mr Mugabe is said to own a ten-bedroom mansion, Mexico and even the Seychelles.

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