Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, who turns 91 this month, stumbled as he descended from a podium after addressing supporters at Harare International Airport earlier this week.
But despite video and photographic evidence, Zimbabwe’s information minister denied Mugabe had in fact taken a fall.
“What happened is that the president tripped over a hump on the carpet on one of the steps of the dais as he was stepping down from the platform, but he remarkably managed to break the fall on his own,” Jonathan Moyo told the state-run Herald newspaper. “I repeat that the president managed to break the fall.”
Mugabe had just returned from Addis Ababa, where he was named chairman of the African Union. Moyo, in a lengthy explanation of the incident, listed famous falls by other world leaders, including George W. Bush and Gerald Ford.
“[E]ven Jesus, let alone you, would have also tripped in that kind of situation,” he said.
For years there has been speculation over Mugabe’s health.
“In the circumstances, there’s really nothing to write home about the nonsensical celebrations by malcontents who are imagining a fall that never was since it was actually broken by the president himself,” Moyo said.
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