Sunday, November 30, 2003

Zimbabwe: a bit about the new chief of the military

Constantine Guveya Chiwenga, promoted to the role [Commander of Defence Forces] from army chief, was involved in rallying soldiers behind Mugabe's 2002 re-election and seizing land from a white commercial farmer under Mugabe's land reform programme, according to local independent newspapers.

Most of Zimbabwe's military top brass are veterans of the 1970s war against white minority rule who are fiercely loyal to Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF party.

... Zvinavashe [former Commander of Defence Forces], Chiwenga and air force commander Perence Shiri stirred controversy before elections last year by saying the security forces would never allow ''anyone opposed to the ideals of the...liberation war'' to come to power, local media said -- an apparent reference to opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai. (link)