Former President Robert Mugabe has castigated his predecessor Emerson Mnangagwa for sending soldiers to brutalise protesting civilians.
Mugabe was speaking at his Blue Roof mansion in Borrowdale where hundreds of invited guests were celebrating his 95th birthday. He said:
Some people think that being a leader means killing people and beating people, but that is not the way. Even the fallen heroes would not approve of that.
We are hearing there are graves that have been created by the army when they kill people. It is not the task of the army to lead the people with guns. Let us not be killers of our own people.
Soldiers should take their rightful place and fight when the situation demands. They should be protectors of people and I am not scared to say it.
Mugabe’s remarks come after Mnangagwa deployed the army on August 1, resulting in the shooting and killing of 7 civilians. The army was again deployed in January and 17 more people were killed, a countless number of women were raped and hundreds of people seriously injured.