Go now, raging war vets tell Mugabe

HARARE - In an unprecedented development that is set to shake both the governing Zanu PF and the country to their foundations, irate war veterans yesterday threw down the gauntlet to President Robert Mugabe, challenging him to resign immediately in the interest of Zimbabwe.

The former freedom fighters, until now Mugabe and Zanu PF’s political bulwark, also said pointedly that the long-ruling and increasingly frail nonagenarian’s continued stay in power was a stumbling block to the country’s development, in addition to allegedly being “a hard-sell” for the eagerly-anticipated 2018 presidential elections.

“We are saying this country will only go up when Mugabe steps aside because his management is no longer respected by anyone, including his own ministers,” war veterans’ political commissar, Francis Nhando, told journalists during a media briefing in Harare.

“If he announces his retirement date now, the economy will improve because there is nobody who will invest his money where the future is uncertain.

“Nobody will lend money to a 92-year-old and if he does not step aside, 2018 will be the most difficult year to campaign for us as war veterans.

“How do you campaign for someone you do not like and who does not like you either? The relationship between us as war veterans and the president has broken down, he and the party don’t like us anymore,” he added.

Zanu PF insiders who spoke to the Daily News last night said they feared that the shocking outburst by the former freedom fighters could prove to be “the proverbial feather that breaks the carmel’s back”.

“This is huge and ominous. Never before have we seen and heard these kinds of things from real war veterans.

“I fear that this could be the proverbial feather that breaks the carmel’s back, particularly if you take this in the context of the party’s worsening factional and succession battle,” one of the canvassed bigwigs said.

Indeed, with Mugabe continuing to fail to name his successor in his dotage, and war veterans openly pushing for Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa to take over from him, Zanu PF’s ructions have reached boiling point over the past two years — with hundreds of its senior officials being purged from the former liberation movement.

During a meeting in the Midlands province two months ago, the restless war veterans warned that if Mnangagwa was overlooked in the ugly succession war, there would be bloodshed — prompting Mugabe to subsequently issue his own chilling warning reminding them of what happened to dissidents during the terrible Gukurahundi era in parts of Matabeleland and the Midlands in the early 1980s.

Then, an estimated 20 000 innocent civilians were murdered in cold blood by the North Korea-trained Fifth Brigade in a controversial military campaign that was launched by Mugabe’s government ostensibly to fight insurrection in the western regions of the country.

Yesterday, the war veterans reiterated their strong support for Mnangagwa to take over from Mugabe, with Nhando saying the “greatest sin” that former freedom fighters could ever commit was “to be afraid to say what we think about succession in Zanu PF”.

“There is a group that wants to change the order of leadership in the party and I heard the First Lady (Grace Mugabe) refuting that she had said Mnangagwa was her senior. She said she had said it, but later changed to say the VP was her junior, and that is political corruption”.

The war vets also said they would boycott this year’s Heroes Day celebrations next month in protest against the recent expulsion from Zanu PF of their vocal chairman, former Cabinet minister Christopher Mutsvangwa.

“We will not be part of the celebrations this year because we are sick and tired of saluting small boys and girls while flies get into our mouths.

“We are keeping the G40 going through our participation.

“We must take the system head on and stop being cowards,” another former freedom fighter from Mazowe, who only identified himself as Mudizimunyi, said.

Other war vets even suggested that the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWVA) should mobilise its membership to demonstrate against Mugabe at the Heroes Acre to show their displeasure.

“We should all unite because they are using divide and rule tactics against us.

“So, we must make sure that we bring back all war veterans that were fired, including Jabulani Sibanda, because he committed no crime,” said David Kuwaza from Manicaland.

Yesterday’s meeting was attended by, among other veterans of the country’s liberation struggle, former Education minister Fay Chung, who described Mugabe’s government as “rotten” and implored war veterans to wage a war against public sector corruption.

“System yedu yakaora. Tinoda kutungamirira chimurenga chebudiriro not chimurenga che-corruption (Our system is rotten to the core. We want to lead a revolution of development and not one for corruption),” the much-respected Chung said.

Mugabe has for the past 36 years relied on the former freedom fighters to stay in power.

War vets are particularly credited with saving him from certain defeat in the hotly-disputed 2000 and 2008 elections when they stood accused of launching a violent crackdown against white commercial farmers and MDC supporters.

The fall-out between Mugabe and his storm troopers also comes as the 92-year-old is battling rising public anger against him and Zanu PF, which has seen strikes and riots further hurting the already dying economy.

Earlier this month teachers, nurses and doctors went on strike after the government failed to pay them their June salaries on time.

There are also growing doubts about the capacity of Mugabe’s cash-strapped government to pay civil servants their July salaries on time.

Military personnel who were hoping to be paid mid this month were left bitterly disappointed last Thursday and Friday when they checked with their banks for their money — and to make matters worse, they were not told until yesterday when they would receive their remuneration for this month.

Worried analysts and opposition political parties say the government’s continued failure to pay its workers on time, particularly soldiers, could spark serious disturbances, including violent riots.

Amid all this, tension is rising in the country as fed up Zimbabweans join hands to demand change and an end to Mugabe and Zanu PF’s rule, which they say has been catastrophic.

Comments (30)

Kana madzingwa mavakuona kuipa kwe ZANU sei sei mangamusingazvitauri nguva yose

dever - 22 July 2016

Pamberi nema war veterens. Pasi naRobert Mugabe. Gudo guru peta muswe kuti vadiki vakutye. Robert give others a chance

Simba Jongwe - 22 July 2016

Enemy one of this nation is Mugabe of zanu is Mugabe MDC , churches , workers and businesses its Mugabe and with him we are heading past stone age and we can not afford that any more if he is Zimbabwean and loves this country he must do the good thing step down now .Its unfortunate that these dander heads so called war vets took 36 yrs to see that this guy Mugabe is not presidential material .hence they had been aiding him kill opposition supporters so he could remain in power . Mugabe hamba baba uyokufaka ngonxolo koZvimba

Diibulaanyika - 22 July 2016

Hopefully it is not too late. War Veterans are really an important institution for the tyrannical Goblin. I am sure this development, has significantly further weakened the Ancestor. Tavakuda, kuti muchiva very active and participate vigorously, towards Mugabe's ouster. For as long as he is the Head of State the general populace that includes our War Veterans will continue to suffer.

ZimVendorisedNation - 22 July 2016

This Mugabe must do the honorable thing like what Mbeki did. People no longer love you.

Tajamukatose - 22 July 2016

regai ndimboimba chimbo 4 Mugabe [ngaaende.....ngaende Mugabe idhooodhiii mgaaende ngaaendeee Mugabe idhooodho

chivo - 22 July 2016

Dikanayo, dzikanayo, dzikanayo ! This is the courage that has been missing for all along. Its never too late. For the first time I will use the word comrades. Comrades, there is only one person at teh helm of the crusade to destroy our country. That is Robert Mugabe. He wields absolute power to weaken or undo the law of the land. He condones corruption as long as it suits him to remain in power irregardless of the cost to the nation. Now its time to forget about our focus on those who sing for him for their supper. Instead, lets rise en masse and deal him the last and final debilitating stroke to finish him. When he is down his leuftenants are no headache to deal with. There can never be anybody as cruel as him rising from his ashes. Who ever succeeds him will have learnt a lesson - a lesson to listen to Zimbabweans. Comrades, its no longer about a political party: its now about Zimbabwe, the country to which we all belong, the country we love, OUR MOTHERLAND.

Masamba Akareyo - Tanganda - 22 July 2016

Agreed. Mugabe is the worst dictator Africa has ever had. He thinks he owns the country. He thinks if Kasukuwere, Chiyangwa and Chombo own half of Harare then his housing policies are a success. He thinks if he can afford to fly out 52 to times in a year then the country is rich. The time to re evalute the Mugabe regime is now. I submit that this is a one man dictatorship using ZANU PF as a brand or trading name that is all.

Tekere - 22 July 2016

Uum panenyaya.

Gushungo - 22 July 2016

Here we go again who were the millions marching yesterday @truth

Slim Cat - 22 July 2016

Mugabes selfishness tendencies are exposed he cant rule the country from the wheelchair as if there are no people to succeed him kana ivo vanoswera vachamu omberera maoko vanorwarawo

peacelover - 22 July 2016

We are sick and tired of this dictator.This same thing that happened to Kadaffi must also happen to this biggest FAILURE of Zimbabwe called Mugabe

David - 22 July 2016

well i only no of a prodigal son who remembered his wealth home and family and who returned . not even once have i read of a banished comrade who is remembered for returning to his roots and became a hero. we mighty be writing history here !!!!!.

murambatsvina - 22 July 2016


viola gwena - 23 July 2016

imbwanana hadzisvinuri zuva rimwe.vanamukoma kana maakuona zvatakabviroona pagukurahundi totii zvaita.mugabe and his cronies have bn ruling the country the animal farm style. let's see action vanamukoma. noone is more equal than others. the time is now, let's all citizens liberate ourselves.vanamukoma yeukai kuti makabvira kare muchiitwa zvikorobho. chishandai nevamwe, tisunungure nyika.ngwarirai kunyengedzwa kana kuvhundutsirwa.sisi harina.imi neruzhinji tisu takarwa kwete mugabe. ngaaeendee!!!

Robed - 23 July 2016

lets unite and correct this mess

gcobani - 23 July 2016

Musatipembedze kuti disrespecte president.No.We want a dignified exit of our forma commander.That is what we want.Yes he ered bt kukanganisa ndekwevanhu.We want him to join mbeki,mkapa,chisano ,his friend nujoma.In good retirement.Thats what evry comrade is wishing him.Retirement at his blue roof house.24 hr security,wth his current packages.Ndi baba vedu.We just need him to know that even Bolt the runner,in a relay he passes on the stick ,not to try n outrun all teammates.So plz understand us on this one.

viola gwena - 23 July 2016

Mugabe has a clear succession plan! He is in fact planning to succeed himself!! Period. Now even the "Mugabe for life" mantra doesnt seem to be working as the economy implodes! No food on the patronage table for the big wigs, and no crumbs falling from that table for the war vets. Abva ajamuka manje!! Mirai zvenyu there shall come a time very few months to come when we won't be able to pay for anything as a country, ndipo patichasungira mureza tose naana Mutsvangwa. Go war vets go!!

Rt Brigadier - 23 July 2016

@ Viola, it's not the people who prepare a dignified exit for their leader but it's the leader himself who should prep[are a platform for that.Just like respect, it can never be imposed on anyone but the conduct of the leader creates it.If a leader is busy insulting everybody everyday and forgets that he is getting old and should be a role model then he must just reap what he sowed.Even Grace herself has made matters worse by berating anyone who is not in her good books.I don't think Sally would have allowed the situation to get this far.Let him reap what he has sowed.If he did not plan for his own dignified exit then he must dance to his tune.All the leaders you mention had a vision and nobody has problems with them.They acknowledged where they made mistakes which is the opposite of our own who sees everyone as being wrong and he himself correct all the time. Chisingaperi chinoshura veduwee.

Tahir Iqbal - 23 July 2016

KKKKK now the condom has finally burst the war vets who covered him to continue abusing us are that condom so now he is seriously exposed will die politically bcoz his condom the war vet are no longer protecting him as they are now going to work with the masses to kick him out . But better go now instead of waiting to be humiliated like Banda , Maputo .Saddam . and his friend Gadaffi . heeish thoko !!!!!!!!!!

Diibulaanyika - 23 July 2016

The president is a student of Kamuzu Banda so what do u expect dictatorship?! Mwana wenyoka inyoka Mwana waKamuzu ndiKamuzu....

Dhewa - 23 July 2016

Oh Heavenly God hear our humble cries.Protect your church, the shepherds and the flock.Protect the weeping widows and the hungry orphans.We pray for justice and righteousness in Jesus Christ's name.AMEN.

Membathisi - 23 July 2016

I'm just enjoying your blindness and stupidity. Enjoy the confusion while we replace Zanu with Zanu.

Major General - 23 July 2016

The sweetest think for any nation is to speak with one voice do anything together just as our neighbours in Mzansi do for example and that is why everything that side is ticking and will continue ticking . With one voice and one act we can test sweetness of nationhood of zim . You injure one you have injured all of us . If we do that now namwari anoyenda chete .

Diibulaanyika - 23 July 2016

Munhu Wese Kuna Amai (amai chaivo Mai Mujuru....not Joki Fake Dr Grace)

Doug SA - 23 July 2016

Nonsense what mai a product of zanu will always remain like that only fools will be hoodwinked Mujuru is not a leader but just protecting her diamond mines at chiadza . Go there you will find a place called kwa mujuru . She is corrupt to the bones We are tired of these crooks

Siginya mbila - 23 July 2016

Hero Gushungo you said it in Bindura If WAR VETS say GO I will leave office the next day kufuka neku warira toda kuona kkkk

If War Vets say go I will Go - 25 July 2016

We welcome the comrades to the trenches of fighting against dictatorship, poverty, corruption, nepotism, although they are a bit late their voices will add on the pressure.

Van Barn - 25 July 2016

Mdara,rova pasi,totambura,chembere dzedu dzotambura.Iko ka Grace kakadzidza kupiko?Hatinga remekedze zvese zvamuri kuita.Gmb yakafaa ne nyaya dza Kangai,i have seen corruption but right now sekuru mugabe rovai pasi chii chirikunetsa?we will find next leader tega chimboenda kunozorora,tinotonyara kutaura kuti tinobva ku-zim,coz ma-photos wakarara hako muma meeting awanda iko kudonha,rova pasi iwe une hutsinye

farai chafesuka - 25 July 2016

Lets hope its the peoples voice that is heard thats wht democracy means.an necessary changes can be made for the betterment of the people.

Susun - 27 July 2016

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