Army ruckuses a threat to democracy


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ZIMBABWE – Zimbabwe’s fragile democracy is under threat once again and we would like to call on the country’s civilian authorities to put our soldiers on a tight leash lest Zimbabwe is turned into a banana republic overnight.

The continuing belligerent talk by senior members of the military establishment should be a great cause for concern to all peace-loving Zimbabweans. The military chiefs’ loud-mouthed discourse has thus far frightened the populace more than their supposed enemies.

After late General Vitalis Zvinavashe and his ilk’s infamous “straight jacket” statement motor-mouth Major General Douglas Nyikayaramba’s “thoughtless noise” a few years ago, the lull following the conclusion of the Government of National Unity and the 2013 elections won by President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF party might have given Zimbabweans some modicum of peaceful sleep.

But the deadly cat-fights in Zanu PF over 91-year-old Mugabe’s succession and the brutal purge of senior leaders, including former Vice-President Joice Mujuru, could not have gone unnoticed by the military or worse still reports indicate its intricate involvement and tacit approval.

Now that Mujuru et al seem to be coalescing to form a political party that has potential to upstage Mugabe and his cabal’s power base, the army is back in the limelight, threatening the very foundations of this great nation.

We believe that Presidential Guard commander Brigadier-General Anselem Nhamo Sanyatwe and Zimbabwe National Army Lieutenant General Phillip Valerio Sibanda’s recent utterances should never be allowed to go unchallenged.

In normal societies, Zvinavashe, Nyikayaramba, Martin Chedondo, Sibanda and Sanyatwe should have been told by the civilian authority to go back to their barracks and keep all citizens safe than concern themselves with issues purely political.

However, ours is not a normal society. Nyikayaramba was instead promoted for lashing out at ex-Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai in what could have constituted nothing less than treasonous talk had he directed his belligerent talk at Mugabe.

Sanyatwe thinks he will be promoted just like Nyikayaramba before him hence Mugabe should be held accountable for whatever happens as he was responsible for the deaths, disappearances and injuries sustained by ordinary people during the blood-spattered 2008 presidential run-off election if ever it can be called such.

Tens of thousands of Zimbabweans lost their lives; gave the only lives they had for one-man, one-vote and the freedom of association.
Mujuru and every other civilian Zimbabwean for that matter have as much right as anyone to form a political party and seek to remove Mugabe from power constitutionally.

Sibanda, Sanyatwe and such other lap-dogs who have dumped their professionalism and oath of office to defend the country’s independence and democracy for political expediency must resign their positions and join politics if they want and see whether they will get a single vote in their favour.

They are paid by public funds and swore allegiance to Zimbabwe and not Zanu PF. Abusing the trust bestowed on them by Zimbabweans and threatening to abuse borrowed power should never be tolerated.

Mugabe must call them to order if ever he is still in-charge as he claims.

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