Special Advisor to President Emmerson Mnangagwa, Christopher Mutsvangwa has denied saying that the ruling Zanu-PF party was going to work “heavily” with the Zimbabwe Defence Forces in order to mobilise voters.
Mutsvangwa held a press conference in Harare today and said that he was misquoted. Said Mutsvangwa:
A statement which is said to have been attributed to me to say the army is the one which runs the elections for Zanu-PF. It’s a lie…I said there was a team which helped to undo the dynastic tendencies of Mugabe. And then I said I promised the new President we were going to deliver an electoral victory to him. And I said that excludes the army because a professional army does not get involved in election campaigns. That’s exactly what I said.
Mutsvangwa according to an article published by NewsDay said that Zanu-PF will work with the Zimbabwe Defence Forces. Said Mutsvangwa:
We will win resoundingly, better than the 1980 elections and we will mobilise heavily working with the ZDF.
However such statements are not new as Minister of State for Masvingo Provincial Affairs Josiah Hungwe was reported to have said that Zanu-PF will use the Zimbabwe Defence Forces when campaigning in next year’s harmonised elections. Hungwe told a Masvingo Provincial Coordinating Committee (PCC) meeting that Zanu-PF would not leave the soldiers when campaigning. Said Hungwe:
In the Bible, the Kings ruled with the army on their side. Saka patinoenda ku2018 elections musasiya soja. (Zanu PF) Chairman, soja apa imi mberi. (When we campaign in 2018, do not leave the army. We will move side by side with the military).