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‘Coup soldiers’ are hungry, eating ‘sadza and beans without cooking oil’

Zimbabwean soldiers who assisted President Emmerson Mnangagwa to grab power from late former President Robert Mugabe through a military coup in November 2017 are hungry, eating sadza and beans without cooking oil.

Defence minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri told a pre-budget seminar that soldiers were surviving on such a bad diet.

Her revelations, however, raises suspicions of negligence of the executive that was brought into power by the military.

“On the food items they are supposed to be getting 53 items but this has been reduced to five items only. Soldiers were going for sadza and beans without cooking oil daily.”

Muchinguri said Zimbabwean soldiers are humiliated by poverty.

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“Soldiers do not have adequate accommodation; they need to be in barracks…

“They are given all sorts of names, they use public transport, they are insulted on a daily basis and, whilst on duty, they sometimes go without food.”

After capturing the military through then Army General Constantino Chiwenga, Mnangagwa led a coup while being exiled in South Africa in November 2017.

The military took control of the streets of the capital and the main television station and, with popular support from the most corners of the country, declared Mnangagwa the next President.

In a move that was viewed as controversial and a military capture of the government, Mnangagwa made Chiwenga his deputy, thanking him for commandeering a coup that installed him as the leader of the country.

Mugabe was forced to to resign from both the government and the ruling Zanu-PF party.

His cabinet allies like Walter Mzembi, Jonathan Moyo, Patrick Zhuwao and Mandi Chimene fled the country. They are currently in exile.

But they are now indicating an intention to come back and rejoin Zanu-PF. 

Mzembi recently praised Mnangagwa for making bigger strides in economic and infrastructural advancements.

There is, however, a court challenge at the High Court, filed by a Zanu-PF youth Sybeth Musengezi challenging Mnangagwa’s rise to power.

Musengezi argues that the 19 November 2017 Zanu-PF central committee meeting that elected Mnangagwa to be the leader of the party after forcing Mugabe to resign was illegal.

Against this background, Mnangagwa’s government is failing to cater for the soldiers who assisted him to grab power.

Minister Muchinguri actually shared shocking pictures of soldiers’ housing at William Ndangana Barracks in Chipinge, a base which is responsible for the security of the Zimbabwe-Mozambique border.