Talk:Robert Mugabe

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Good article Robert Mugabe has been listed as one of the good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
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Edit request[edit]

Could someone please add the following under the article's wives and children section:

Mugabe's sons Robert Mugabe junior and his younger brother Bellarmine are known for posting their lavish lifestyle on social media, which has drawn accusations from Tendai Biti that they are wasting Zimbabwean taxpayers' money.[1]

Edit request[edit]

Frankly, the frequent references to Rober Mugabe being a socialist yet 'adhering to conservative economic policies' are factually incorrect and are not portraying the Zimbabwe socialist development between 1980 to the early 2000's.

Twice is this mentioned: Once in the header section - "despite his Marxist rhetoric and professed desire for a socialist society—adhered largely to conservative economic policies." and again in the body under his prime minister section "Mugabe's government continued to make regular pronouncements about converting Zimbabwe into a socialist society, although did not take concrete steps in that direction".

Both these statements are factually incorrect. Under Mugabe, Zimbabwe massively expanded socialist policies such as health care, education, ownership of public enterprises and the complete disregard for private ownership of land. These qualifying statements after making mention of Mugabe's Marxist background and staunch belief in socialist policies is revisionist in nature and does not accurately reflect what is now the failing state of Zimbabwe. How can someone say that, however in the same sentence mention that Mugabe forcibly removed property rights from white landowners and distributed it to the native population. [1]

In the other Wikipedia article on the Economic History of Zimbabwe [2], Wikipedia makes reference that "Initially the government followed a corporatist model with government management of the economy... the government propagated a whole range of new economic policies, introducing a minimum wage and virtually eliminating the right to fire workers. Total spending on education nearly tripled (from Z$227.6 million to Z$628.0 million), as did government spending on healthcare (from Z$66.4 million to Z$188.6 million), between 1979 and 1990. Expenditure on public-sector employment rose by 60%, and on the civil service by 12% per annum over the course of the 1980s. Central government expenditure tripled and increased its share from 32.5 percent of GDP in 1979 to 44.6% in 1989. Interest rates were artificially capped."

None of these policies are 'conservative' free market policies and are socialist in nature. In the 90's, Mugabe's government tried to implement some conservative economic controls over the economy to encourage job-creating growth by transferring control over prices from the state to the market, improving access to foreign exchange, reducing administrative controls over investment and employment decisions, and by reducing the fiscal deficit. This failed due to severe drought and international trade policies. Following in the 2000's, Mugabe's government forcibly repatriated white farming land (again, not a 'conservative policy') and caused the economic decline we see today.

It is a lie and missinformation to say that Mugabe adhered largely to conservative economic policies as if to paint Western Free Market principals over a failed state. Could Wikipedia please remove these qualifying statements as they are incorrect as the Mugabe's government did not 'adhere to conservative economic policies'.

Semi-protected edit request on 24 October 2017[edit]

Remove the words "world health" at the beginning of the article, they are out of place and were probably added accidentally. (talk) 09:16, 24 October 2017 (UTC)

Done Gulumeemee (talk) 09:27, 24 October 2017 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Robert Mugabe/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: My name is not dave (talk · contribs) 19:07, 24 October 2017 (UTC)

Immediate failure check[edit]

  • Copyright violations -- nothing of concern.
  • Any pressing tags on the article -- nothing of concern.
  • Edit wars? -- nothing of concern.

Criteria check[edit]


Criteria Remarks Pass/fail
Well-written Good. The prose is written tightly and concisely, with no problematic spelling errors or mistakes. There are no immediate MOS errors. Pass
Verifiable The lede shouldn't really contain any refs, and this is the case here. Pass
Broad in coverage Good. The lede covers his rise to president, what he represents, what he has done, his early life and views of him. A little nitpick, in the capacity of my own opinion, is that one thing which is missing here, and is prominent, is a mention of Zimbabwe's hyperinflation. But whatever. Pass
Neutral Yes! I enjoy the little bit at the bottom of the lede which attempts to represent opposing views of Mugabe. Pass
Stable? No edit wars in general. Pass
Imagery? There is a picture of Mugabe in the infobox that has no licensing issues. Pass

Overall: Pass

Early life[edit]

Criteria Remarks Pass/fail
Well-written This section is excellently written, there are no 'running sentences'. Pass
Verifiable Owing to the fact that I do not own the books cited in this section, I will good-faith accept them, as the majority of readers here would. Researching around the sources, the authors appear to be reputable and highly respected in their field. Pass
Broad in coverage The early life of someone should include information of where they were born, when, to whom, their education and some bits of early career, if the article is big enough to split the main career away. This article meets all of this. Pass
Neutral Statements are not taken out of context, they are quoted, and the section does not posit any extraordinary statements or signs of bias. Pass
Stable? Yes. Pass
Imagery? The image here identifies an inspiration of Mugabe's early ideas that would stick to him in later life. Appropriate. Pass

Overall: Pass

After reading the section below, I see that the University of London is referred to as London University. I don't believe this is the standard way to express the university's name and I see no indication that it was the historical name at the time of Mugabe's graduation. My name isnotdave (talk/contribs) 17:19, 30 October 2017 (UTC)
I have come across the term "London University" before, although it does appear that "University of London" is more correct and thus I shall amend this in the article. Midnightblueowl (talk) 20:59, 3 November 2017 (UTC)

Revolutionary activity[edit]

Criteria Remarks Pass/fail
Well-written First clause of the first sentence of first section, I would change to "While Mugabe was in the north", or something that is a bit specific as to where Mugabe was when the nationalist movement was founded. I clicked onto this section and found the first sentence a little vague, I had to scroll to find, again, where Mugabe was. Other readers, who may be interested in just his revolutionary activities, may end up getting confused in the same way.

"Being a teacher who possessed three degrees and had travelled elsewhere in Africa, Mugabe was among those invited to speak to the crowd." - this seems a bit of a non-sequitur to me. I would put the latter clause first and then the former clause last, to give it more sense. @Midnightblueowl: if you have access to the book sources cited here, maybe you could clarify this. If you don't, don't worry.

  • I haven't got the sources to hand, but I remember what they were referring to. Mugabe was among those chosen to speak because he was a teacher (a respected position in society), had three degrees (a very rare achievement at that time), and had travelled abroad (again, very few black Rhodesians had ever done this). It was the combination of these factors which set him apart from most of the other people in the crowd. Perhaps I could change this to "Having become a much-respected figure through his profession, his possession of three degrees, and his travels abroad, Mugabe was among those invited to speak to the crowd"? Do you think this an improvement? Midnightblueowl (talk) 22:24, 3 November 2017 (UTC)

'London University' -- see above.

It states that the Southern Rhodesian general election, 1980 happened in March. But if you click, it says February. Could this be clarified? In addition, it says that Mugabe was elected for the 'Harare constituency of Highfield' -- but wasn't Salisbury named to Harare after the election and when he came to power as Prime Minister?

  • I've switched "March" to "February", which appears to be the correct month. I've also switched "Harare" to "Salisbury" (well spotted!) Midnightblueowl (talk) 22:34, 3 November 2017 (UTC)
Verifiable Using the same sources as before. Other ones I have no concerns with. Pass
Broad in coverage Very broad. Covers everything you need to know and more. Pass
Neutral Yes Pass
Stable? Yarp Pass
Imagery? Appropriate. Gives a representation of some of the related people during this period of Mugabe's life. @Midnightblueowl: Why do you think the flag in this section might be of relevance though?

  • My thought was that this section discusses the period in which Mugabe secured control of the ZANU party, and thus the party's flag would be appropriate at this juncture. Midnightblueowl (talk) 21:29, 3 November 2017 (UTC) || ...

Overall: Pass

Prime Minister of Zimbabwe[edit]

Criteria Remarks Pass/fail
Well-written Good. Pass
Verifiable Uses same sources, mostly as previous. All good. Pass
Broad in coverage Very broad Pass
Stable Yes Pass
Imagery? Good use of imagery, especially showing Mugabe at 1982 age! Pass
Neutral? Yes Pass

Overall: Pass.

President of Zimbabwe[edit]

Criteria Remarks Pass/fail
Well-written All the other L2 sections have some sort of time period after their subject. Why not so here?

  • I don't quite follow; there are year ranges after each sub-title in the "President of Zimbabwe" section?Midnightblueowl (talk) 22:45, 3 November 2017 (UTC)
    Actually, there are a few choices here. Because it is actually the Prime Minister section header which is the only one with a duration period next to it. So you can either get rid of the "1980–1987" bit on the Prime Minister section header or add a period of duration on the revolutionary and President section headers. Or, we could just keep it the same, if you think it works effectively as it is. At this point, its something minor that can be discussed in future, like at an FAC or a peer review. My name isnotdave (talk/contribs) 09:29, 4 November 2017 (UTC) || Pass
Verifiable Uses same sources, mostly as previous. All good. Some new, online ones have come into play here, all from reputable newspapers (no tabloids). Pass
Broad in coverage Very broad, shows much of his actions and relations as president. Pass
Stable Yes Pass
Imagery? Why are there images of him in this section taken in the period before he became president? In addition, at the bottom of the article, there is a picture of him in 2008 and 2011. The one in 2011 is in the wrong section, so to speak. I think that it would be advantageous to choose either the 2008 photo in the 2008 to 2013 section or the 2011 one.
  • I've switched the locations of the 2008 and 2011 images. As for the 1980s image, I acknowledge that they are (chronologically speaking) in slightly the wrong sections, but the time periods being discussed are not far apart and we are restricted by which images we actually have freely available to us. Midnightblueowl (talk) 22:43, 3 November 2017 (UTC)
Neutral? Yes Pass

Overall: Pass.


Criteria Remarks Pass/fail
Well-written Good -- but the bottom section repeats what had been said above -- "During the 1980s, Mugabe indicated his desire to transform Zimbabwe from a multi-party state into a one-party state." This is relevant to ideology but it could be rephrased since it's not good practice just to say more or less the same thing again.
  • I've moved the paragraph to a different position of the section, although I have not rephrased it; I'm not really sure it could really be rephrased in a manner that would fundamentally eliminate any level of repetition, to be honest. 22:02, 3 November 2017 (UTC) || ...
Verifiable Uses same sources, mostly as previous. All good. Pass
Broad in coverage Very broad, shows a lot of views about his ideology. Pass
Stable Yes Pass
Imagery? None here, no worries. Pass
Neutral? Yes. Uses quotes to reflect upon the many opinions of Mugabe's ideology. Pass

Overall: Pass.

Personal life[edit]

Criteria Remarks Pass/fail
Well-written I can say for sure that I actually enjoyed reading this section. Pass
Verifiable Uses same sources, mostly as previous. All good. Pass
Broad in coverage As per above^^ Lots of interesting info beyond 'wife and kids' stuff. Pass
Stable Yes Pass
Imagery? Good Pass
Neutral? Yes. Uses quotes to reflect upon the many opinions of Mugabe's ideology. Pass

Overall: Pass

Reception and legacy[edit]

Criteria Remarks Pass/fail
Well-written Good Pass
Verifiable Good Pass
Broad in coverage Shows legacy and reception through his period in power. Good Pass
Stable Yes Pass
Imagery? Good Pass
Neutral? Many views represented here. Pass

Overall: Pass


I am putting this on hold, as there are a few issues that need to be resolved. Most are not urgent, but one is -- the problem with the election stating that it was held in March, when the election page stated that it was held in February. My name isnotdave (talk/contribs) 11:53, 1 November 2017 (UTC)

  • Many thanks for taking on this review, My name isnotdave. I hope that you gained some interest from reading through the article. I think that I have responded to each or your comments; you may wish to counter-respond on a few points before moving forward with the review. Midnightblueowl (talk) 22:47, 3 November 2017 (UTC)
  • No worries. Going forward, it would be good to see this as a featured article. All in all it looks ready for such a feat, there could be a small reduction in article size, it is at 86k and is 13,595 words long, but this is a well-made article. My name isnotdave (talk/contribs) 09:34, 4 November 2017 (UTC)

Profile picture[edit]

The current profile picture is horizontally flipped, could we have it in the original aspect? Governor Jerjerrod (talk) 08:48, 28 October 2017 (UTC)

Why, uniquely in the context of this article, has the chap we knew in the 1980s as "Lord Carrington" been transmuted into someone we are asked to accept as "Peter Carington" (sic)? This isn't reverse snobbery, though a bit of pedantry might come in handy all the same - one of the pillars of the the Carrington peerage was the financing of the Jamaica and other Caribbean slave economies, and the notion that its current possessor might be available to all of us under the familiar form of address used by his erstwhile political friends and allies is fairly dubious, to put it mildlyDelahays (talk) 15:27, 28 October 2017 (UTC)

Remove a source please[edit]

: {{cite journal |last=Kebonang |first=Zein |title=Politics and Anarchy: Zimbabwe's 2008 Run-off Presidential Elections in Context |journal=African Journal of History and Culture |volume=4 |number=2 |pages=9–16 |year=2012 |doi=10.5897/AJHC11.043 |ref=harv}}

This is a predatory open access publisher.

First and Second Vice-President[edit]

I think the info about Vice-Presidents serving under Mugabe should be modified to reflect the fact that there are First and Second Vice-Presidents of Zimbabwe. Otherwise the dates in the info box become confusing. Haage42 (talk) 17:36, 14 November 2017 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 15 November 2017[edit]

Mugabe has been confined to his house (talk) 12:54, 15 November 2017 (UTC)

Note: The article is already being updated. If you don't have anything to add don't use this request again, it may be removed  — Ammarpad (talk) 13:05, 15 November 2017 (UTC)

Duplicate information in the summary[edit]

"between 1982 and 1985; at least 10,000 people, mostly Ndebele civilians, were killed by Mugabe's Fifth Brigade. Pursuing decolonization, Mugabe's government emphasised the redistribution of land controlled by white farmers to landless blacks, initially on a "willing seller-willing buyer" basis"

The quoted text is repated twice in the summary. In the 3rd paragraph and at the end of the 4th. Also the 2nd time it is mentioned it says "atleast 20,000" whereas the 1st mention says "atleast 10,000". — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:32, 15 November 2017 (UTC)

Good Article?[edit]

How did this meet the criteria for "Good Article" when there are only about four (4) references, used repeatedly throughout, for the entire article? (talk) 20:44, 15 November 2017 (UTC)

The article uses seventeen sources throughout, not four. These sources include several biographies dedicated to Mugabe himself and a number of academic publications, appearing in peer-reviewed journals and edited volumes. This being the case, the anonymous IP's allegation is essentially baseless. It appears that their comment stems from an expectation from some readers that an article should be based on hundred of different press sources that can be freely accessed online; there are articles like that, and in some cases it is necessary as there are no other citations available, but generally these press sources are not the best material to use. Press articles usually only cover issues in a fleeting fashion and are sometimes sensationalistic. They lack the depth and level of understanding present in biographies and most academic sources; it is the latter that are therefore preferred as WP:Reliable sources at Wikipedia. Midnightblueowl (talk) 11:31, 16 November 2017 (UTC)
As the person who reviewed the GA, I would like to second Midnightblueowl's thoughts on the matter. Although basing an article on a single source should be avoided (and would make a GA review fail), the sources used here appear to be of excellent quality, even if a few are repeatedly used. Quality and not quantity. My name isnotdave (talk/contribs) 14:10, 17 November 2017 (UTC)

"Forced out of office"[edit]

Yes, that my be the case in practice, but the military is at least pretending he's still the President. Until they make him resign (or in the unlikely event they exile or kill him) he should still be considered to be in office. (talk) 09:41, 16 November 2017 (UTC)


15th november 2017 Mugabe was arrested, but nobody confirmed his deposition. At the moment, he's still the President. Moxmarco (talk) 12:46, 16 November 2017 (UTC)

Edit request for section "guerrilla war: 1975–79"[edit]

It is stated in the article that Mugabe met Ceaușescu in 1979, but the caption under the actual photo (you will see it when you enlarge the image) states that the meeting took place in 1976. If someone could try verifying and correcting this information. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:28, 17 November 2017 (UTC)

Jew Communist?[edit]

Antismitic canard->.."where he met a number of Jewish South African communists who introduced him to Marxist ideas.[29]" WIKIFAIL - In fact it was NOT Jews it was the Jesuits, as the text shows. (talk) 10:28, 18 November 2017 (UTC)

While it is true that the link between Jews and communism is often used as an anti-semitic canard by the far-right, it is nevertheless unequivocally the case that there was a strong Jewish component in the southern African communist movement of the period. In many parts of the world, including South Africa, the strong tradition of left-wing Jewish intellectualism coupled with a level of social marginalisation led many Jews to embrace Marxism. In this instance, the text specifies the truth of the matter - it was indeed Jewish South Africans who introduced Mugabe to Marxism. 12:21, 18 November 2017 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 19 November 2017[edit]

He is no longer president Change from President of Zimbabwe (Present) to till 2017 AnushPatel (talk) 15:11, 19 November 2017 (UTC)

Not correct: Mugabe has been dismissed from his party but still holds his role as president. The most recent report is that he has been given an ultimatum to resign by Monday or be impeached Anarcho-authoritarian (talk) 16:40, 19 November 2017 (UTC)

It has been announced on the news tonight (21 November 2017) that Mugabe has resigned. Vorbee (talk) 18:07, 21 November 2017 (UTC)