President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe has appeared on television for the first time since the military takeover of the government, but many questions are still left unanswered, Pascal Kempson reports
So far in what has been a tumultuous week for Zimbabwe, the military were spotted on Tuesday travelling towards the capital Harare. Later that day, the military took over, somewhat violently, the HQ of Zimbabwe’s national broadcaster ZBC. Major General Sibusiso Moyo then took to television to reassure the nation of President Mugabe’s safety. It was stressed by the military that this was not a coup, but they were simply targeting the ‘criminals’ that surround the President. It was said that ’situation will return to normalcy’ after this has been completed.
There has been no kind of official response at this point from the Government, but Mr Mugabe, now a prisoner of the military, did appear on television this morning at a university graduation ceremony. The most ironic and potentially cringeworthy story from this event is that the under siege President “capped” the wife of General Chiwenga who took power on Wednesday.
The Military in Zimbabwe say that progress has been made in talks, which were held on Thursday, but where this situation will end up is anyones guess. It will no doubt be the people of Zimbabwe that suffer in the long run if a solution is not found. What we now know is that a rally has been planned in support of the Zimbabwean military, who are pushing for a “new Zimbabwe” after 36 years under the rule of President Mugabe. This will take place tomorrow in Harare. The event’s poster was tweeted out by Trevor Ncube, a prominent figure within the Zimbabwean media.
It currently appears as if there are only two options for the people of Zimbabwe. As we saw with Brexit, a country can be torn apart by a choice one way or another. A bigger picture approach may be needed for true peace to be found in the great houses of stone.