'Roadmap agreed' with Robert Mugabe, says Zimbabwe's military chief

20 November 2017, 16:32

Zimbabwe's military chief Constantino Chiwenga says a roadmap has been agreed with deposed president Robert Mugabe.

Mr Chiwenga also added that vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa, whose firing led to the unrest in the country, will return to Zimbabwe "shortly" to meet with the president.

Mr Chiwenga called for calm and patience, and paid tribute to Zimbabweans for their support.

It said it was "encouraged by new developments" in discussions with the president, who has resisted calls to resign and now faces impeachment.

Robert Mugabe has rubbed the noses of his opponents in his decision not to resign, by ordering weekly cabinet meetings every Tuesday at State House, his official residence.

The 93-year-old, who has been in charge in Zimbabwe for 37 years, is defying the overwhelming will of the people, the military and the political party he set up, by ignoring calls to stand down.

An ultimatum from his Zanu-PF party to resign by midday or face impeachment, came and went with no word from President Mugabe.

The party will now press ahead with the procedure, which it believes can be done and dusted in just a couple of days.

However, Dr Tarisai Mutangi, a constitutional lawyer, has told Sky News impeachment could take months.

"He knows the law is on his side, that the constitution is on his side and that the king pins of this process want to do it constitutionally, and that means it's going to take quite some time," Dr Mutangi said.

Under the Zimbabwean constitution, the president can be impeached for four things:

:: Serious misconduct
:: Failure to obey, uphold or defend this constitution
:: Willful violation of this Constitution
:: Inability to perform the functions of the office because of physical or mental incapacity

The war veterans association which organised the mass rallies and marches against Robert Mugabe at the weekend are taking a different tack, asking the high court to remove him for dereliction of his executive duty.

Meanwhile, Zimbabweans are still reeling from Mugabe's refusal to resign of his own accord and want him out whatever it takes.

One man told Sky News they would go to the President's house and physically remove him.

Zimbabwe's ruling Zanu-PF party has officially notified President Mugabe of his removal as party president and will table a motion to impeach him on Tuesday after a deadline it set for his resignation passed.

The party has expressed confidence that Mr Mugabe could be voted out within two days.