Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Zim generals: We won't meet PM

02 May 2013, 08:03

Harare - Zimbabwe's generals and police commanders say they won't meet with Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and other "malcontents" trying to undermine their powers, the country's official media reported on Wednesday .

The state-owned Herald newspaper, controlled by President Robert Mugabe's party, said the country's powerful police chief warned critics of the army and police that they risked being arrested if they continued demanding reforms in the security forces and "peddling lies" on the allegedly tainted role of the armed services ahead of crucial elections later this year.

Security chiefs "will neither meet or engage" with Tsvangirai, the paper quoted police chief Augustine Chihuri as saying.

Chihuri said security chiefs "have no business talking to individuals of no substance," according to the paper, which said the police chief was addressing a police sports gala in Harare.

Tsvangirai's party has called for an overhaul of the police and military blamed for openly supporting Mugabe and failing to enforce the rule of law in the troubled southern African country.

Chihuri dismissed the calls for security reforms as attempts to create confusion within the ordinary ranks of the defence forces.

"I wish to warn liars and the peddlers of falsehoods who dream of talking to us, to this general or to that general... the law will visit them harshly," Chihuri said, according to the paper.

Service commanders deny their units were among Mugabe loyalists blamed for state-orchestrated violence and human rights abuses surrounding past election campaigning and polling.

Chihuri said demands for "so-called security sector reforms" were a gimmick by political opponents who played no part in Zimbabwe's war of liberation that ended colonial-era rule and led to independence from Britain in 1980.

Confused malcontents

"We are too busy to engage with confused malcontents who do not know their identity and have a propensity to destroy what others, dead and alive fought for. They must stop abusing the freedom and democracy that so many Zimbabweans died for. I advise journalists to stop being used in this regard," Chihuri said.

It was the strongest criticism by a service commander of Tsvangirai and his party's leaders since several generals refused to salute the former opposition leader after he became prime minister in 2009 in a shaky coalition with Mugabe forged by regional mediators after the last violent and disputed elections the year before.

Chihuri's outspoken remarks were seen as another setback within the coalition as watershed elections loom.

Fresh elections to end the coalition are expected by September.

Tsvangirai has asked his aides to open dialogue with the police and military to urge them to discharge their duties in an unbiased way and meet obligations in the constitution to be non-partisan.

Tsvangirai, 60, a former labour leader, did not join guerrilla forces fighting to end white ruled Rhodesia. His party says more democratic reforms, including a shuffle of some service units and commanders it accuses of being tainted by violence and alleged vote rigging, are a key demand to prepare the way for free and fair elections.

Chihuri, according to The Herald, rejected such reforms as "a non-issue".

- AP


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Jayne Zack
I am in ODM to stay, Busia Depu...

Busia Deputy Governor Kizito Wangalwa told Deputy President William on the face that he was in the Orange Democratic Movement to stay. Read more...

Boda Boda operators in Bahati rai...

Motorbike Boda Boda operators from Bahati Sub county on Tuesday took to the streets of Nakuru’s CBD lamenting over what they term is harassment by patrol police officers in the area. Read more...

Submitted by
Gabriel Ngallah
Human Rights activist lives in fe...

The Human rights fraternity in Mombasa is currently living in fear after the home of one of the vocal human rights champion was invaded on Monday night. Read more...

Submitted by
kel wesh
Poisonous milk powder siezed by K...

The Kenya Revenue Authority has seized two containers with illegal milk powder which had been declared as gypsum board at Mombasa port. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Be ready for protests, Raila warn...

Expect protests if meddling with Auditor General continues, Raila Odinga has said. Read more...

Submitted by
Kenya says will return to interna...

Kenya will return to international markets to borrow when it feels the time is right, National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich said on Tuesday. Read more...