EXILED former Higher Education minister and G40 kingpin, Jonathan Moyo has claimed Zanu PF has deployed more than 2 000 soldiers across the country to lead its election campaign in similar fashion to the 2008 polls that were marred by violence and intimidation.
Moyo made the claims on micro blogging site, Twitter on Tuesday.
He said President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration’s silence when its political commissar, Engelbert Rugeje allegedly threatened villagers in Masvingo over the 2018 general elections showed that Zanu PF was geared to repeat the 2008 poll violence.
“Junta silence on General Rugeje’s threat that army will in 2018 repeat its 2008 poll atrocities shows the threat is real,” Moyo tweeted.
“Buoyed by coup, ZDF (Zimbabwe Defence Forces) has embedded over two-thousand poll soldiers in all Zimbabwe communities. Some army officers, who led the 2008 poll blitz are leading 2018 blitz!”
Moyo’s statement was confirmed by the MDC-T, which said it was concerned with the continued militarisation of villages around the country.
“We have got solid and incontrovertible evidence pointing to the fact that thousands of army officers in civilian attire have been deployed in the countryside for the purposes of carrying out clandestine political campaigns on behalf of Zanu PF,” party spokesperson Obert Gutu said in statement yesterday.
“We demand the immediate and unconditional demilitarisation of all our villages and other communities. People shouldn’t be forced to surrender their biometric voter registration serial numbers to village heads and Zanu PF officials”
Zimbabwe National Army spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Alphios Makotore yesterday referred questions to ZDF spokesperson Colonel Overson Mugwisi, who was not reachable.
Rugeje was not reachable but Zanu PF spokesperson Simon Khaya Moyo said: “Zanu PF is a party. It does not have soldiers. It is not an army. It is a masses’ political party. How does it deploy soldiers?”