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Chamisa wants army to join his August 16 demo

MOVEMENT for Democratic Change Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa has appeared to plead with the country's army to join his MDC party's planned protest set for Friday that insiders claim is aimed at toppling President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

In a statement to mark Defence Forces Day Tuesday, Chamisa said while some soldiers might have "strayed", he was certain most of the country's uniformed forces understood the aspirations of ordinary Zimbabweans.

"When we express ourselves, we are also doing it on their (soldiers) behalf; on behalf of and with their families, friends and neighbours, singing songs of freedom and prosperity that they cannot sing on account of their job," Chamisa said.

He added that the men and women in uniform are suffering along with all citizens under Mnangagwa.

"Poverty, like rain, falls upon every roof. However, poverty is not a natural phenomenon. But since it is made by humankind, it can be overcome by humankind too, through working together in unison," said the MDC leader.

The MDC has given notice of what it has called "Free Zimbabwe March" set for August 16th which it officially says is aimed at pushing Mnangagwa to dialogue with Chamisa and find a lasting solution to "legitimacy issues" surrounding the Zanu-PF leader's year old administration.

Chamisa said he respected current Commander Defence Force General Philip Valerio Sibanda.

"We know that the majority of our defence forces are bound and are faithful to their oaths as defenders of the nation. The few who stray beyond the lines of professionalism should never be allowed to taint the entire institution.

"This taint can be cleansed by holding to account those who have strayed away from their constitutional prescriptions. Regrettably, we have lost innocent lives in the past year at the hands of such elements," he said making reference to two violent incidences in the past 12 months that claimed over 20 people in which the military is accused of using live ammunition to break up civilian protests.

"To this end, I am quite encouraged by the comments made by the *National Army Commander, Lieutenant General Edzai Absolom Chanyuka Chimonyo, and Zimbabwe Defence Forces Commander, General Philip Valerio Sibanda."

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Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka
Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka

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