Zimbabwe army chief says Tsvangirai’s a security threat

2011-06-23 09:26

A top army officer and close ally of veteran Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe accused Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai of being a national security threat and a lackey of Western powers, media reported today.

“Tsvangirai doesn’t pose a political threat in any way in Zimbabwe, but is a major security threat,” the state-owned Herald newspaper quoted brigadier-general Douglas Nyikayaramba as saying.

“He takes instructions from foreigners who seek to effect illegal regime change in Zimbabwe.

“This is what has invited the security forces to be involved because we want to protect our national security interests.”

Nyikayaramba’s comments come after Tsvangirai urged army generals at a rally on Sunday to resign and run for political office instead of making intimidating statements.

Nyikayaramba dismissed Tsvangirai’s comments as “nonsense”.

“We are dealing with a national security threat, which can only be dealt with by people in uniform,” he said. “If it was a normal political environment, one would hope to retire at some point and join politics.

“However, we can’t afford to be akimbo when there is this foreign attack.”

Nyikayaramba was earlier this week removed from the country’s constitution-making body after he called for President Mugabe to remain in office for life.

He was taken off the troubled programme after Mugabe’s rivals complained that the military should not be involved in the process.

Nyikayaramba repeated his statements that Mugabe should remain in office for life saying the country can not afford to replace a leader in the middle of a struggle.

“President Mugabe will only leave office if he sees it fit or dies,” he said.

“No one should be talking about his departure at the moment. He sacrificed a lot for this country. We will die for him to make sure he remains in power. We are prepared to stand by our commander in chief.”

Since the formation of Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change in 1999, President Mugabe and his Zanu-PF party have repeatedly attacked the party as a creation of Western powers.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

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

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

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.