There has been a complete blackout in the State media on what the Zimbabwe Defence Forces chief Constantine Chiwenga said yesterday, yet his full statement was all over the social media well before sunset.
Chiwenga warned the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front to stop the purge on members with liberation war credentials who are currently under siege from the G40 faction loyal to President Robert Mugabe and his wife saying the military will not allow the country to be taken over by counter-revolutionaries.
He also warned those fermenting the current instability within ZANU-PF that they must be exposed and fished out and said members must go to the special congress next month with equal opportunity to exercise their democratic rights.
Chiwenga was flanked at the press conference where he made the statement by the commander of the army Valerio Sibanda and the acting head of the Air Force of Zimbabwe.
Mugabe has warned that the army must keep out of politics, but Chiwenga said yesterday there were several rebellions before and all were resolved by the military.
“The formation of FROLIZI, the attempt to remove the late Cde Chitepo from his position of Chairman at the Mumbwa bogus congress in 1973, The Nhari-Badza rebellion, Ndabaningi Sithole rebellion soon after the death of Cde Chitepo, the Vashandi 1 and 2 as well as the rebellion that led to the death of the late ZIPRA Commander, Cde Alfred Nikita Mangena, among others are cases in point,” he said.
“Therefore, the current shenanigans by people who do not share the same liberation history of ZANU-PF are not surprises to us. But, what is significant to us and the generality of Zimbabweans is to remember that all these rebellions were defused by the military, but at no point did the military usurp power.
“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.”
Ironically, The Herald broke the story yesterday afternoon and promised that more would follow. It wrote:
The Zimbabwe Defence Forces says the military will not hesitate to step in when the country’s revolution is under threat.
Zimbabwe Defence Forces Commander General Constantine Chiwenga told journalists at the Zimbabwe National Army headquarters Monday afternoon that the revolution championed by ZANU-was under threat from some counter revolutionaries that have infiltrated the party.
He said drastic action should be taken immediately to stop the counter revolutionaries from sliding the country back into colonisation.
“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.
DETAILS TO FOLLOW
In what most of his followers felt was a response to Chiwenga, Higher Education Minister Jonathan Moyo tweeted: “kungovukura vukura, ini zete kuvata zvangu!” to which one follower, Jones Musara, replied: “Barking dogs will eventually bite. Apa une ganda dete. Uchanzi zete kurumwa zvako!”