PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe has attacked the ailing Nelson Mandela calling him an idiot and a coward who accommodated the whites in South Africa after he became the president at the end of apartheid.
He attacked Mandela at a victory party to celebrate his record seventh term in office following his victory in the country’s disputed elections.
In one of his trademark fiery speeches, the 89-year-old Mugabe -- who has led the southern African country since 1980 -- claimed that he should be hailed as an African hero instead of Mandela, the anti-apartheid icon and former president of neighboring South Africa.
"While Mandela sits comfortably in a hospital, I stand before you fit and healthy, ready to lead this country and the Zimbabwean people for at least another 25 years," Mugabe added, referring to the 95-year-old Mandela's ongoing treatment for a lung condition.
"My huge victory in these elections prove I am the greatest leader in the history of Africa," Mugabe told supporters in Zimbabwe's capital, Harare. "I have spent my whole life fighting for the Zimbabwean people and they continue to elect me."
"I am the greatest African who has ever lived," Mugabe said. "The world should love me more than the idiot Nelson Mandela. F**k Nelson Mandela. As I waged war against colonialism, that coward sat on his ass in prison for 27 years. He's a coward.
"I have been leader for 33 years. Mandela was president for five years. What kind of idiot gives up political power? Great leaders like me know how to stay in power.
Mugabe also mocked South Africa's multicultural "rainbow nation" in his speech, claiming that Mandela didn't care about the interests of black Africans.
"There is only one color allowed in Zimbabwe, and it is black," he said. "I banned the color white in my country. Nelson Mandela told all the white people to stay in his ridiculous rainbow nation. He should have thrown all of the whites out of his country like I did.