It follows news that the Zimbabwean Defence Force (ZDF) has taken control of the bankrupt and corrupt African banana republic.
Meanwhile Eyewitness News repots that South African president Zuma, in his capacity as chair of SADC, is sending special envoys to Zimbabwe and Angola “in light of the unfolding situation in the Republic of Zimbabwe”, while Al Jazeera and CNN are reporting that the whereabouts of President Robert Mugabe is unknown.
The South African government communications agency, sanews.gov.za, says on its website Zuma “is sending the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula and the Minister of State Security, Bongani Bongo, to Zimbabwe to meet with President Robert Mugabe and the Zimbabwean Defence Force (ZDF)… Zuma had spoken to President Robert Mugabe on Wednesday, who indicated that he was confined to his home but said that he was ‘fine’. South Africa is also in contact with the ZDF.”
Special envoys will also be sent to the Republic of Angola to see President Joao Lourenco, chairperson of the SADC Organ on Politics, Defence and Security to brief him on the situation.
Earlier EWN reported that Zuma had called for calm and restraint in Zimbabwe after the military seized control on Wednesday.
Speaking in a statement on behalf of the SADC, he expressed his great concern over the unfolding political situation in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe’s military was deployed to the streets in front of government offices, courts and parliament.
Earlier the ZDF said in a stement:
Fellow Zimbabweans, following the address we made on 13 November 2017 which we believe our main broadcaster, ZBC and The Herald were directed not to publicise, the situation in our country has moved to another level.
Firstly, we wish to assure the nation that His Excellency, The President, of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Head of State and Government and Commander in Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, Cde R.G Mugabe and his fa,ily are safe and sound and their security is guaranteed. We are only targeting criminals around him who are committing crimes that are causing social and economic suffering in the country in order to bring them to justice.
As soon as we have accomplished our mission we expect that the situation will return to normalcy.
To the civil servants: As you are aware, there is a plan by the same individuals to influence the current purging taking place in Zanu PF to the Civil service. We are against that act of injustice and we intend to protect everyone of you against it.
To the judiciary, the measures underway are intended to ensure that, as an independent arm of the state, you are able to exercise your independent authority without fear of being obstructed as has been the case with this group of individuals.
To our Members of Parliament: Your legislative role is of paramount importance for peace and stability in this country and it is our desire that a dispensation is created that allows you to serve your respective political constituencies according to democratic tenets.
To the generality of the people of Zimbabwe: We urge you to remain calm and limit unnecessary movement. However, we encourage those who are employed and those with essential business in the city to continue their normal activities as usual. Our wish is that you enjoy your rights and freedoms and that we return our country to a dispensation that allows for investment, development and prosperity that we all fought for and for which many of our citizens paid the supreme sacrifice.
To political Parties; We urge you to discourage your members from engaging in violent behaviour.
To the youth: We call upon you to realise that the future of this country is yours. Do not be enticed with dirty coins of silver, be disciplined and remain committed to the ethos and values of this great nation.
To all Churches and religious organisations in Zimbabwe: We call upon you and your congregations to pray for our country and preach the gospel of love, peace, unity and development.
To both our people and the world beyond our borders: We wish to make it abundantly clear that this is not a military takeover of Government. What the Zimbabwe Defence Forces is doing is to pacify a degenerating political, social and economic situation in our country which if not addressed may result in violent conflict.
We call upon all the war veterans to play a positive role in ensuring peace, stability and unity in the country.
To members of the Defence Forces: All leave is cancelled and you are all to return to your barracks with immediate effect.
To our respected Traditional leaders: You are the custodians of our culture, customs, traditions and heritage and we request you to provide leadership and direction to your communities for the sake of unity and development in our country.
To the other Security Services: We urge you to cooperate for the good of our country. Let it be clear that we intend to address the human security threats in our country. Therefore any provocation will be met with an appropriate response.
To the media; we urge you report fairly and responsibly.