By Staff Reporter
The army will move a large number of troops and equipment to six districts in Mashonaland Central province for a training exercise, the Zimbabwe Defense Force (ZDF) has announced.
The advisory comes amid growing tensions within the ruling executive, as Vice President Constantino Chiwenga plotted to oust President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The movement of army vehicles almost coincides with the Zanu PF elective congress and the last time large numbers of soldiers and vehicles were seen on the streets, the army was staging a coup.
In a statement seen by NewZimbabwe.com, the ZDF advised the public not to panic.
“Zimbabwe Defense Force would like to inform the general public that they will be conducting a training exercise in Bindura, Mbire Muzarabani, Rushinga, Shamva and Mt Darwin districts of Mashonaland Central Province from 22nd September to 21st October 2022 This year’s training exercise follows a similar exercise conducted in Masvingo province in 2021,” the statement read.
“The training exercise is aimed at honing and honing operational skills to enhance the ability of the Zimbabwe Defense Forces to fulfill their mandate. The exercise involves the movement of a large number of troops and vehicles from Harare to the central province of Mashonaland, so the general population should not be surprised by these movements.
Observers say the timing of the exercise was curious amid unconfirmed reports two separate camps within the Zanu PF, one led by Mnangagwa himself and the other by his ambitious deputy, were vying for the power before the party’s elective congress, where the presidential candidate will be nominated. .
Recently, a splinter group calling itself the original Zanu PF claimed that Mnangagwa no longer serves party interests and should therefore hand over power to the former army general.
Mnangagwa was supposed to go to Cuba, but canceled his trip and returned home citing bad weather. According to another indicator, all is not well in the old revolutionary party.
Chiwenga, believed to be ill, was at the airport to meet Mnangagwa when he arrived from New York although he failed to show up for an official event in Gweru.