Robert Mugabe has been addressing supporters in Harare, as Zimbabwe celebrates independence from Britain. It is something he has been doing now for more than three decades. And at 89 years old, it seems he has no plans to stop. Mugabe plans to contest elections scheduled for later this year. Addressing crowds at the national sports stadium in Harare, he urged Zimbabweans to vote peacefully, to confound what he called foreign critics.But there is both optimism and anger going into the presidential poll. A referendum on a new constitution was successfully carried out last month.
A resounding 95 percent backed the new charter. It imposes a limit of two five year terms on the office of president. It strengthens human rights, and calls for impartiality in the police and the military. But many Zimbabweans say even now, they have yet to enjoy the fruits of indepenence.