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Despite being looked upon unfavorably by the populace, Mugabe took 61% of the vote in presidential elections in July 2013, soundly defeating Tsvangirai. Mugabe"s Zanu-PF party also won 158 out of 210 seats in parliament. Tsvangirai alleged the vote was rigged, but decided against challenging the results, saying he would not get a fair hearing.

Tsvangirai was suspended from his party, the Movement for Democratic Change, in May 2014. His detractors in the party denounced him for failing to defeat Mugabe in 2013"s election and accused him of being an undemocratic and incompetent leader.

There was no shortage of drama in Zimbabwe in late 2014, as conspiracy theories and accusations hinted at a succession battle. The state-run newspaper published accusations that Vice President Joice Mujuru had conspired to have Mugabe assassinated, and Mugabe"s wife, Grace, accused Mujuru of also trying to have her killed. Mujuru, a former guerrilla fighter in the country"s war against white rule, was widely considered the successor to Mugabe. She dismissed the allegations as "ridiculous," and she professed her loyalty to Mugabe. Nevertheless, she was ousted from a seat on the governing party"s central committee in early December. At the same time, Grace Mugabe was given a leadership position in the party, Zanu-PF. Then, Mugabe fired Mujuru and seven members of his cabinet. He replaced Mujuru with Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, an ally of Grace Mugabe. Observers speculated that Mugabe wants to ensure his loyalists remain in power after he dies.