Judas Iscariot died thousands of years ago, but it appears his disciples are still members of some political parties.

In Zimbabwe, some members of President Robert Mugabe's party are allegedly asking him to retire from politics and let another person rule, but the President is not happy about it.

He likened them to the biblical Judas Iscariot that betrayed Jesus Christ.

Mugabe is 93, but he believes he is still strong enough to rule the nation.

The Zimbabwean leader has been in power since the nation, then called Rhodesia, gained independence from Britain in 1980.

He intends to seek another five-year term at elections due in 2018. In public, his party, ZANU-PF, has rallied behind its aging leader.

But in private its members are deeply divided over his continued leadership and who will eventually take over from him.

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Mugabe, who has repeatedly said his party would choose his successor when the time comes, said he was going nowhere and accused some party officials of supporting him during the day while plotting against him behind his back.

“Others are like those that Jesus spoke about during his last supper, when he said ‘some of you eating with me here shall betray me’.

"The Judas Iscariot. They are here among us,” Mugabe said during the burial of a party member.

“They want to cause leadership change … for the president to step down.

“I did not grab power. I was chosen by the people. It’s the people’s throne, so I don’t want with it,” he said to loud cheers from some party members.

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ZANU-PF is divided into two factions. One backs Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa to immediately succeed Mugabe and another is rallying behind Mugabe’s wife, Grace, and also wants the aging ruler to be president for life.

“When the day comes I will say thank you to my Zimbabwean family and I will step down so you can choose my successor. But for now, I am the one in charge,” Mugabe said.

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