Power has changed hands in Zimbabwe and its new leader, President Emmerson Mnangagwa is prepared to keep his inauguration day promises.

Zimbabwe will hold elections in four to five months as the nation hopes to return to the roots of its democracy earned 37 years ago.

The vote, a litmus test of Mnangagwa’s democratic credentials, will be crucial to unlocking badly needed financial assistance and repairing relations with Western powers and international financial institutions.

Mnangagwa, a protege of Mugabe, came to power in November after a de-facto military coup when the 93-year-old was forced to resign after the military confined him to his Harare mansion.

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The struggle for power between Mnangagwa and former first lady Grace Mugabe, that finally broke the camels back and set the nation free from the clutches of its life-long ruler.

75 year old Mnangagwa is under pressure to deliver on the reforms promised to the economy, the nation's political sphere while renegotiating international relations with the West.

“Zimbabwe is going for elections in four to five months’ time and we have to preach peace, peace and peace because we know it is good for us and we have no doubt that we will have peaceful elections,” Mnangagwa was quoted as saying by the official Herald newspaper during an official trip to Mozambique.

“We will ensure that Zimbabwe delivers free, credible, fair and indisputable elections to ensure Zimbabwe engages the world as a qualified democratic state.”

Under the constitution, Zimbabwe should hold elections between July 22 and Aug. 22, but parliament can choose to dissolve itself, triggering an earlier vote. 

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