Another coup army commander Edzai Chimonyo succumbs to cancer
By Nyashadzashe Ndoro
Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) commander Lieutenant-General Edzai Absolom Chanyuka Chimonyo has succumbed to cancer.
Presidential spokesperson George Charamba confirmed this on Twitter:
“Devastated to announce the passing on of General Chimonyo early this morning after a long fight against cancer. Go well, freedom fighter, commander and ambassador!” he said.
General Chimonyo assumed command of the ZNA in 2018 after the promotion of General Philip Valerio Sibanda to Commander of the Defence Forces.
He played a crucial role together with late army generals, Perence Shiri and Sibusiso Moyo in the coup that ousted late former president Robert Mugabe in November 2017.
Both Shiri and Moyo succumbed to the deadly coronavirus disease.
In 2018, General Chimonyo defended the coup which saw the late founding father placed under house arrest for a week leading to his resignation, saying it was a “people’s operation whose main objective was to arrest potentially volatile, economic and political situations in the country”.
General Chimonyo added: “Operation Restore Legacy was an unprecedented miracle that saw millions of Zimbabweans from all walks of life coming out marching against former President Mugabe and his wife Grace, including the G40.
“As you may be aware, Operation Restore Legacy witnessed millions of our people spontaneously taking to the streets regardless of the colour, religion, race, creed and political affiliations.”
He reiterated claims the military intervention was meant to get rid of the “G40 cabal” that had allegedly usurped Mugabe’s powers, causing national confusion in the process.
If Mugabe had not resigned, Chimonyo said, this could have caused public “disgrace and shame” to Mugabe who was 94 years old then.
However, on the eve of the country’s harmonised elections in 2018, Mugabe described the army claims as “nonsensical”, insisting he never intended to leave his wife as President.
Mugabe insists the ostensible targeting of so-called criminals around him by the military was in fact an excuse to remove him from power. Nehanda Radio