Zimbabwe army chief warns Mugabe’s party after VP sacked


November 13th, 2017 – Fort Russ News –

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– Agencies – – by Samer Hussein –

Zimbabwe’s army chief on Monday demanded that purges which are currently going on in the ranks of Mugabe’s ruling Zanu-PF party, be put to an end.

The purges began following the sacking of Zimbabwean vice president Emmerson Mnangangwa (until recently a close aide of Mugabe).

The army chief issued a warning, saying that military could intervene in order to assure the political stability of the country.

“The current purging which is clearly targeting members of the party with a liberation background must stop forthwith”, General Constantino Chiwenga told a media conference which was attended by approximately 90 senior army officers at the military headquarters in Harare.

“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 added.

At the moment, Zanu PF’s National Disciplinary Committee (NDC) is preparing to hear and decide cases of more than 100 senior officials said to have been backing Mnangagwa’s bid to succeed Mugabe.

Among those facing the purges are several government ministers. Their hearing dates are yet to be announced. Some of them will likely not be eligible to participate in the central committee elections which are set to go underway this week. It is noteworthy that Zanu PF has issued a decree, banning all those who are appearing before the NDC unless they are cleared.

According to Eldred Masunungure, professor of politics at University of Zimbabwe, Mugabe will unlikely be able to sanction wholesale purges of Mnangagwa’s allies.

“It would be very unwise for Mugabe to undertake such comprehensive expulsions. He is likely to be more cautious. He knows he cannot be alienating himself from too many provinces”, Masunungure said.

An unnamed Zanu PF insider told the media that Mugabe had already displayed such signs during last week’s session.

According to some analysts, Mugabe’s family are not worried about the future of Zanu PF but rather their own situation once Mugabe is gone.

Political commentator Maxwell Saungweme said Mugabe was likely to sanction wholesale purges as he was determined to remove all traces of Mnangagwa’s legacy, while in turn Shakespeare Hamauswa, another political analyst, said that judging from the past events, Mugabe was capable of dismissing all of them from the ruling party, adding that in light of his political strategies, he might spare a few of them in order to retain at least a minimal level of stability.

Mnangagwa was fired by Mugabe on Monday. His decision surprised many Zimbabweans who believed that the former VP would be deposed after Zanu PF’s December session.

The longtime aide to Mugabe was also kicked out of Zanu PF on Wednesday after the party held its internal meeting and during which, tens of official reportedly wanting to succeed Mugabe, were scheduled for a hearing.

Until last Monday when Mugabe fired Mnangagwa, the two shared a very close friendship dating back to the days when their movement was resisting the at the time ruling elite.

The 93-year-old Mugabe assumed office on December 22nd 1987.

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