Herald Reporter —
IT is business as usual in Harare and other cities across the country with Zimbabweans going about their daily routines. The Zimbabwe Defence Forces announced early morning today that it has taken action to address political, social and the economic situation in the country that it said risked turning violent.
The action, they said, is not a coup.
Shops, banks and hospitals among other service providers are open for business.
Commuter omnibus operators are ferrying people to and from town.
Long queues were seen at the banks as people wait to make withdrawals.
“The situation is normal, as you can see. The army has urged us to come to work,” said one worker at Topics along First Street.
“What we want is peace and prosperity in this country.”
A Mr Amon said: “It is clear the army will guide the country into a new era. Retain calmness and push the country to elections or transitional dispensation until it is safe to hold elections.”
It was business as usual for mobile phone vendors in the city centre.
“We are not afraid of anything as long the army is there. They are protecting us.
“They want peace and calmness. Zvirikutofaya so, tirimo mutown,” said Mike Sambani, who has been selling second hand mobile phones near Zimpost.”
Our Masvingo Bureau reports that it is business as usual in the country’s oldest town.Civil servants and workers in the private sector have reported for duty as usual with banks, supermarkets and other businesses opening for business.
They are queues outside banking halls and service stations. In Chinhoyi, people are up and about as well. There is normalcy with shops and Government offices open for business.
The same situation is prevailing in Mutare. Our Midlands Bureau says its business as usual in Gweru. There is peace and calm in all parts of the city. Shops are open for business as are banks and council banking halls are all open for business.
This follows assurances by the ZDF for Zimbabweans not to panic. The ZDF spokesperson Major General Sibusiso Moyo urged Zimbabweans this morning to go about their daily chaos.
“To both our people and the world beyond our borders, we wish to make it abundantly clear that this is not a military takeover of Government. What the Zimbabwe Defence Forces is doing is to pacify a degenerating political, social and economic situation in our country which if not addressed may result in violent conflict,” Maj-Gen Moyo said.
He also said President Mugabe and his family were safe and their security guaranteed.
“We wish to assure the nation that His Excellency, The President, of the Republic of Zimbabwe, and Commander in Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, Cde R.G Mugabe and his family are safe and sound and their security is guaranteed.
“We are only targeting criminals around him who are committing crimes that are causing social and economic suffering in the country in order to bring them to justice. As soon as we have accomplished our mission we expect that the situation will return to normalcy,” Maj-Gen Moyo added.
The ZDF spokesperson called for calm among Zimbabweans.
“To the generality of the people of Zimbabwe, we urge you to remain calm and limit unnecessary movement. However, we encourage those who are employed and those with essential business in the city to continue their normal activities as usual. “Our wish is that you enjoy your rights and freedoms and that we return our country to a dispensation that allows for investment, development and prosperity that we all fought for and for which many of our citizens paid the supreme sacrifice,” he added.
Maj-Gen Moyo assured other arms of the State that their actions were meant to protect their independence. He urged war veterans to ensure peace and stability in the country and said leave days for all ZDF members had been cancelled.