12 January 2018

Zimbabwe: Mnangagwa Administration Illegitimate Despite Worldwide Support, Says Bishop Magaya

President Emmerson Mnangagwa's government is illegitimate despite receiving a lot of support from within and outside the country, the Zimbabwe Divine Destiny's Bishop Ancelimo Magaya said Thursday.

Addressing a press conference in Harare, Bishop Magaya said people should acknowledge the fact that the so called "Operation Restore Legacy" by the military was a coup d'état.

Mnangagwa came to power after the then Commander of the Defence Forces, General Constantino Chiwenga, last November, led a military offensive code named Operation Restore Legacy in which they claimed they were "targeting criminals around" former President Robert Mugabe.

The military put Mugabe and his wife Grace under house arrest at their Blue Roof mansion in Borrowdale before taking over the national broadcaster, ZBC and arresting a number of Ministers in Mugabe's government who were linked to the G40 faction.

This was after Mnangagwa had been fired from both Zanu PF and government and later fled into self-exile claiming his life was in danger. He was to return home two weeks later to take over the leadership of both party and government after the military intervention.

Bishop Magaya said Zimbabwe had been grappling with the issue of illegitimate leadership since 2008 when Mugabe was "beaten" in elections by opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai but "refused to hand over power".

"The truth is Mnangagwa, through the army, has managed to rise to power. There is need to acknowledge that there was a coup. It doesn't matter the popularity, anybody who rises to power through a coup is illegitimate," he said.

The man of cloth said the problem with Zimbabwe's politics was that of starting on faulty foundations, warning that although Mnangagwa had taken over the leadership of both his party and country, he was not safe.

"Zanu PF is not safe. I have said it before that Saviour Kasukuwere and Jonathan Moyo were not safe. Even the current leaders are not safe because of the continuation of a faulty foundation. As long as we don't respect the Constitution, no one is safe," he said.

He said it was the role of the church to send the message that the country needed to go back to constitutionalism.

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