Zimbabwe army 'on high alert' after supporters of Grace Mugabe threatened bloodshed
Zimbabwe's home affairs minister Obert Mpofu has reportedly said that the military and security sector is on high alert amid fears that supporters of former first lady Grace Mugabe could regroup outside the country in efforts to destabilise Zimbabwe.
According to NewsDay, Mpofu said this after former minister of higher education Jonathan Moyo, who was also Grace's ally, warned of bloodshed.
Mpofu said that some elements of the defeated Zanu-PF faction known as Generation 40 (G40) were plotting to counter the military intervention which saw ex-president Robert Mugabe lose power to his former deputy Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Moyo told Reuters last week that Zimbabwe would be plunged into a bloodshed if the international community failed to remove Mnangagwa's government.
Moyo also described the Mnangagwa administration as "illegitimate".
He, however, did not mention where the bloodbath threat was going to come from.
"If you [UN and AU] don’t intervene when there has been such an outrageous, brazen attack on a constitutional order, you are simply opening the floodgates to conflict. If they don’t act, just as the sun will rise tomorrow, Zimbabwe will be another Somalia. There will be bloodshed," Moyo was quoted as saying.
Responding to Moyo's threats, Mpofu said: "If we could deal with a vicious enemy like the Rhodesian regime, what can stop us from dealing with the renegades who may want to destabilise our peace and stability? We are not a banana republic. We are a democratic country with a formidable security services sector and we cannot allow people to destabilise our peace. We may have our differences, but if people start contemplating causing chaos through destabilising our peace, then they will face the wrath of our security sector, but not only of our security sector, but of the patriotic Zimbabweans."
A report by the privately-owned Standard newspaper said that Moyo's utterances had been widely dismissed as "wishful thinking and dreams".
"This matter has nothing to do with us. Ask him, he is the one alleging that," The Zimbabwe Defence Forces spokesperson Colonel Overson Mugwisi was quoted as saying. "Is he being prophetic or it’s his prediction [about bloodshed]. Please ask him about his predictions and not me. I don’t see where we can fit here. People can dream. Ask him about his dreams."
War veterans spokesperson Douglas Mahiya also dismissed the claims as wishful thinking.
Mahiya said unless the G40 group had stolen funds, there was no way they could carry out such attacks in the southern African country.