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Zimbabwe President Fires Seven More Ministers

FILE - Emmerson Mnangagwa, left, Vice President of Zimbabwe chats with Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe after the swearing in ceremony at State House in Harare, Dec, 12, 2014.

Zimbabwe's longtime President Robert Mugabe has fired two more Cabinet ministers and five deputy ministers in an apparent purge of allies of his former Vice President Joice Mujuru.

The government announced Monday the ouster of Flora Bhuka, minister of state for presidential affairs, and Sylvester Nguni, minister of state in the vice president's office.

A presidential statement said they and the five deputies were fired for performing below the expected standard.

Mugabe asked Mujuru for her resignation two weeks ago.

Mujuru had once been seen as the probable successor to the 90-year-old president. Since then, a number of her allies in the government have also lost their positions.

In the meantime, Mugabe appointed longtime ally and former justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa to fill the vice president's office.

Zimbabwe's first lady, Grace Mugabe, has also begun gaining political power, having been appointed to a prominent position in the Zanu-PF political party.