Tensions rise in Zimbabwe as military tanks near the capital
15 November, 2017, 00:25 | Author: Brenda Erickson
On Monday, top army general Constantino Chiwenga warned Mugabe that the military will "step in" if the president continues to expel former liberation fighters from the ruling Zanu-PF party who are supporters of the sacked vice president. The army's spokesman was not available to comment.
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.
Mugabe is the world's oldest head of state, but his frail health has fuelled a bitter succession battle as potential replacements jockey for position.
The ruling party will next month hold an extra ordinary congress to reaffirm Mugabe's candidature in next year's presidential elections and also amend the party constitution to allow for a female vice president.
Pictures of tanks heading towards the capital circulated on social media Tuesday prompting rumors that a coup could be imminent.
Chiwenga said if this happens, the military will interject and stop the process.
His lengthy rule has been marked by brutal repression of dissent, mass emigration, vote-rigging and economic collapse since land reforms in 2000.
Chiwenga's statements on Monday that the military wouldn't permit "hijacking of the revolution" were "clearly calculated to disturb national peace and stability", Information Minister Simon Khaya Moyo, who's also the secretary for information for the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front, said Tuesday in a statement.
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