Zimbabwe’s government has denied claims that it has deployed soldiers to Mozambique.
THE Ministry of Defence and War Veterans Affairs has described the allegations of Zimbabwe Defence Forces deployments in Mozambique as fake news.
In a statement, Minister of Defence and War Veterans Affairs Oppah Muchinguri Oppah Muchinguri said the ministry notes with great concern increasing false allegations of Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) deployments in Mozambique as published by some sections of the media.
“The Ministry of Defence would like to inform the public that it is not true that the ZDF deployed troops in Mozambique to fight some armed elements destabilising that country. The deployment allegations are not only outright falsehoods but malicious, hence fake news should be dismissed with the contempt they deserve,” she said.
Muchinguri-Kashiri said whenever the ZDF is deployed the population is always informed in accordance with dictates of the country’s constitution adding that those bent on peddling falsehoods should be advised that the long arm of the law will catch up with them.
The claim came after President Emmerson Mnangagwa met his Mozambican counterpart Filipe Nyusi on April 30 in Chimoio. A communique issued at the end of the meeting, also attended by the two countries’ defence ministers, said the leaders “addressed the security situation in Cabo Delgado” in Mozambique’s north and “strongly condemned these acts which seek to undermine efforts towards peace and development.”
“Zimbabwe has not deployed the Zimbabwe Defence Forces in Mozambique,” government spokesman Nick Ndavaningi Mangwana said on Sunday in response to media enquiries.
Claims of the deployment had drawn an angry response from the opposition.
Tendai Biti, the MDC deputy president, said Zimbabwe should only act as part of a regional collective.
The reported deployment of Zimbabwean troops in Mozambique represents further reproduction of illegalities and ill-thought actions by the regime,” he blasted. “Assuming there is an urgent military situation in Cabo Delgado, surely the region collectively must act. A meeting of SADC must be held.
“Further, any involvement should only have been part of a SADC mission, nothing else. Parliament should be notified and the constitution should be followed.