When Zimbabweans are expressing nostalgia for Robert Mugabe you know things must be bad. Yet it is now common to hear that things are worse under Emmerson Mnangagwa, president since a 2017 coup, than during the darkest days of the man he deposed. 

Zimbabwe is in humanitarian meltdown. Food is in such short supply that some people have stopped taking their HIV medicine because they cannot afford to pay for the meals that must accompany tablets. In what was once the breadbasket of Southern Africa, many people are down to one meal a day — or less. The World Food Programme says one-third of the country’s 14-million people are “marching towards starvation”. 

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