Zimbabwe army chief warns Mugabe's party that military may intervene after sackings

Former Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa

Former Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa

Chiwenga added that Zanu PF has been hijacked by counter revolutionaries whose agenda it is to destroy Zanu PF from within.

Zimbabwe's army chief has called for an immediate end to purges within President Robert Mugabe's ruling party following the dismisal last week of the country's vice president.

The party's ten provinces, the Women's League and the Youth League have endorsed First Lady Grace Mugabe to be the party's female vice president and to replace Mnangagwa.

The report said that the army had been seen to be backing Mnangagwa to succeed Mugabe, 93, but the nonagenarian's wife Grace had emerged as a top contender.

According to New Zimbabwe.com, Chiwenga recently returned from a trip in China to find Mnangagwa fired from government and expelled from Zanu-PF.

Mnangagwa is now in self-imposed exile.

"We must remind those behind the current treacherous shenanigans that when it comes to matters of protecting our revolution‚ the military will not hesitate to step in‚" he said. The ZDF boss, in a thinly veiled attack on Grace's denigration of the military, demanded that this should stop.

Among other security threats emanating from the goings-on Zanu-PF were "reckless utterances" by some politicians denigrating the military, which he said were causing despondency among its members, he said.

Chiwenga noted that there were current purges within the party targeting people who had a history with the liberation struggle while those who did not participate were gaining ground. "Fellow Zimbabweans and specifically members of Zanu PF‚ the time is now to say NO to demigods and people that are self-centred and only think of themselves and their families‚" Mnangagwa's statement read.

Chiwenga said "instability" in the ruling party had caused "distress, trepidation and despondence". "It is our strong and deeply considered position that if drastic action is not taken immediately our beloved Zimbabwe is definitely headed to become a neo-colony again".

"As a result of the squabbling, there has been no meaningful development in the country for the past five years".

The crisis, he concluded, meant Zimbabwe was struggling with "cash shortages and rising commodity prices". Indeed the party is undoing its legacy built over the years.

"From a security point of view, we can not ignore the experiences of countries such as Somalia, [the Democratic Republic of Congo] DRC, Central Africa Republic and many others in our region, where minor political differences degenerated into serious conflict that has decimated the social, political and economic security of ordinary people".

"Politics shall always lead the gun and not the gun politics".

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