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Zimbabwe army ready 'to step in' to end ZANU-PF purge

14 November 2017

Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who joined the struggle for Zimbabwe's liberation struggle at a young age, was sacked by Mugabe on November 6 for showing "traits of disloyalty".

"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", Chiwenga said in a statement read to reporters at the news conference.

A former Cabinet Minister in President Robert Mugabe' s government has revealed how the veteran ruler has hatched a plot to handover power to his wife.

General Chiwenga spoke at a Harare press conference on the "instability" in Zanu-PF, alongside some 90 senior military figures.

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"The current purging and cleansing process in Zanu PF which so far is targeting mostly members associated with our liberation history is a serious cause for concern to us in the Defence Forces", he said.

Mnangagwa was dismissed after clashing with Mugabe's wife, Grace, who is now in prime position to succeed her 93-year-old husband.

This is the first time Zimbabwe's military has directly criticized the infighting in ZANU-PF and marks a rift between Mugabe and an institution that has been a key pillar of his power.

He said the ZANU-PF had been undermined by "gossiping, backbiting and public chastisement" since 2015, and added, "Indeed, the party is undoing its legacy built over the years".

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Among the big wigs alleged to be loyal to the former vice president and facing the axe are state security minister Kembo Mohadi, cyber security mister Patrick Chinamasa and Environment minister Oppah Muchinguri.

Chiwenga urged unfettered participation at the party's December special congress to choose new leaders.

Mr Mnangagwa, once seen as a successor to Mr Mugabe, has fled into exile.

The crisis had resulted in "cash shortages and rising commodity prices", he said. He has to declare his allegiance.

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While Mugabe has insisted the wartime maxim of "politics lead the gun" would be the compass that should provide the military with direction Chiwenga argued: "It is pertinent to restate that the Zimbabwe Defence Forces remain the major stockholder in respect to the gains of the liberation struggle and when these are threatened we are obliged to take corrective measures".

Zimbabwe army ready 'to step in' to end ZANU-PF purge