The man tipped to take over from Zimbabwe dictator Robert Mugabe has a reputation for being feared.
Reports say Mugabe, is dying of cancer in a Singapore Hospital, and has agreed to hand over power to Defence Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Otago University professor of international relations Robert Patman says the minister is a fierce supporter of Mugabe, and is associated with a number of brutalities.
"He was responsible for playing a major role in the crushing of the opposition Zapu Party in the 1980s. He's also associated with violence against the opposition group the Movement for Democratic Change following a presidential election in 2008."
Mr Patman says Mnangagwa hasn't encouraged talk about succession to Mugabe so there are also concerns about that.
Photo: Robert Mugabe (Getty Images)