Zimbabwe Army General Who Led Coup That Ousted Mugabe Sworn In As Vice President

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Zimbabwe Army General Who Led Coup That Ousted Mugabe Sworn In As Vice President

Zimbabwe’s former army commander who led a military coup (though they didn’t call a coup per say) that helped end Robert Mugabe’s 37-year rule was on Thursday sworn in as one of the country’s two vice presidents.

General Constantino Chiwenga, 61, took the oath of office in the capital city of Zimbabwe, Harare pledging to be “faithful” to Zimbabwe and to “obey, uphold and defend the Constitution”.

In his words;

“I will discharge my duties with all my strength and to the best of my knowledge and ability,” said Chiwenga, dressed in a black suit at a ceremony held on the lawns of the presidential residence.

The new president Emmerson Mnangagwa, dozens of government officials, military and police chiefs as well as traditional leaders, attended the event. Gen Chiwenga retired from the military last week, slightly over a month after the army temporarily took control of the country on November 15, culminating in Mugabe’s resignation six days later.

Mr Mnangagwa, who had a few weeks earlier been humiliated and sacked from his job as vice president by Mugabe, then took over as the head of state.

Gen Chiwenga’s ascent to the country’s second most powerful job has further consolidated the military’s power in the political space of the southern African country. Several other senior army officers have in recent weeks been appointed to ministerial or influential party positions.

President Mnangagwa did not give a speech at the inauguration of his deputies, but told journalists that their responsibility is “to drive the ministers.”

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