DURING THEIR HEYDAYS: Robert Mugabe and his embattled wife Grace Mugabe

Zimbabwe’s first lady says her 93-year-old husband should name a successor, wading into a subject that President Robert Mugabe has previously regarded as taboo.

State broadcaster ZBC says Grace Mugabe told members of the ruling ZANU-PF party women’s league Thursday that naming a successor “will enable all members to rally behind one candidate.”

Mugabe has repeatedly said he will not choose a successor. The world’s oldest head of state has said he will contest next year’s election. He has led the southern African nation since 1980.

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His wife has previously said her husband could rule even from the grave.

This is the first time she has publicly urged Mugabe to name a successor, although she did not say whether her statements were aimed at next year’s election.