President Edgar Lungu has revealed that he had offered to shelter former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe in the days preceding his final fall.
Mugabe resigned on Tuesday afternoon with an impeachment motion in parliament underway to wind up his 37 year reign.
President Lungu who arrived from Angola at a crisis meeting under SADC Defence and Security Committee said that he had offered the fallen Mugabe that he could be harboured in Zambia but the Zimbabwean leader declined.
"I had talked to him that if the chips are down you can come here but he refused saying that his home was Zimbabwe and he will remain there," he said.
President Lungu said that with the Mugabe resigning the soldiers should now return to the barracks.
"Now the people of Zimbabwe should follow their constitution since President Mugabe has resigned. It is time for the soldiers to return to the barracks," President Lungu said.
President Mugabe had been resisting stepping down but finally headed out with pressure mounting on him to step down.
His fall is largely to his long stay in power spurning 37 years although overtures to install his wife Grace as his successor proved the final straw in hold on power.