’Mnangagwa living in fear after attempted coup’: Jonathan Moyo reveals in Twitter thread, publishes ZEC boss Chigumba's WhatsApp election boast
President Emmerson Mnangagwa is living in fear and is unable to leave the country following an attempted military coup against his government in November 2019, exiled former cabinet minister Jonathan Moyo has claimed.
Moyo published the sensational claims in a wide-ranging Twitter thread last night.
Mnangagwa, who has been criticised for his penchant for expensive travel, triggered widespread speculation after he suddenly stopped travelling outside the country following the November return of his powerful deputy Constantino Chiwenga who had spent months in China receiving medical treatment.
The change in routine was read as betraying his fears that Chiwenga, who ushered him into the presidency through the 2017 coup, could seize power.
Government was forced to deny the growing rumours, with spokesperson Nick Mangwana issuing a statement.
“Succession in Zimbabwe happens as a constitutional process and being on leave is not one of the conditions for succession. When HE leaves the country, you complain that he travels too much, he doesn’t stay at home. He stays at home you complain that he is not leaving the country,” Mangawana said.
Moyo yesterday claimed to shed new light on the issue, saying a coup attempt that had been thwarted in November was behind Mnangagwa’s fears and had led to the demotion of CIO deputy director general Aaron Nhepera who is now shuffling papers as Home Affairs permanent secretary.
“13/24 Last week there was widespread chatter, fueled by quarters that ought to know better, that Mnangagwa was self-marooned, unable take his annual leave or to leave the country, ‘fearing a Chiwenga coup’ when Chiwenga was back in China to resume his treatment & recuperation!” Moyo wrote.
“14/24 Mnangagwa has not taken his annual leave & has not been able to leave the country because of a foiled coup in early November. The attempted coup cost Aaron Nhepera his job as CIO Deputy Director General, amid allegations he reported it late & mishandled intelligence on it!”
Moyo, who has become a thorn in the flesh for the authorities as he publishes damaging classified information on his Twitter account, appears to be relying on a network of intelligence sources cultivated during his time in government, boasting in his new 2018 election rigging book – Excelgate – that he has remained in touch with “deep state” operatives.
The ruling Zanu PF has since classified Moyo and expelled members of the G40 faction as national security threats.
Chigumba’s WhatsApp message and rerouted election results
Moyo also challenged Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) chairperson Priscilla Chigumba to deny the authenticity of a WhatsApp message (image above) in which she appears to boast that she would announce the result of the presidential election based on V11s in her possession.
“23/24 On 31 July 2018, after the Army got @ZECzim to invent an illegal route & destination for the transmission, capture & collation of the presidential results, Priscilla Chigumba sent shocking WhatsApp msgs confirming rigging, using V11s & not the critical V23Bs. Ngati nyoo!” Moyo taunted.
The allegations are central to Moyo’s recently published book in which argues that the election was rigged after presidential election results were hijacked at Ward Collation Centres and illegally separated from National Assembly results, preventing them from reaching Constituency and Provincial Command Centres.
Moyo claims the results were prevented from reaching Constituency Command Centres, which produce V23B forms from which the presidential election results should be announced as per Electoral Act, to allow for the insertion of bogus V11s.
Moyo’s claims appear to be corroborated by the European Union Observer Mission which reported that it found ZEC officials filling out V11s in Makoni North two days after the election, in the absence of polling staff and election agents. They reportedly claimed this was due to an earlier shortage of V11s.
ZEC is yet to respond to the allegations.