The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) says a bomb blast which exploded almost two weeks ago at the end of a Zanu PF rally in the country’s second largest city, Bulawayo, was an assassination attempt on President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Police Commissioner General Godwin Matanga told journalists Tuesday that they are investigating the incident.
“Sadly our spirits have been dampened by nefarious and horrendous act that took place barely a fortnight ago which from the look of things was apparently an attempted assassination of His Excellency the president Comrade E.D (Emmerson Dambudzo) Mnangagwa and other dignitaries.
“I therefore wish to take this opportunity to reassure the nation and its entire citizenry that we are fully investigating this dastardly and wicked act which has already unnecessarily claimed two lives.”
Mnangagwa escaped unhurt in the grenade bomb blast but his deputy, Kembo Mohadi, suffered serious leg injuries and is currently undergoing treatment in South Africa together with top ruling party official, Oppah Muchinguri Kashiri, who sustained chest injuries in the incident.
Two suspects John Zulu and Musekiwa were arrested recently and appeared in court to face charges of terrorism, banditry and espionage. They have since been released following the state’s failure to prove its case against them.
Commissioner General Matanga said, “As the Zimbabwe Republic Police we will never rest until all those behind this heinous act at are accounted for and have had their day in court. We will do whatever it takes within the precincts of the law to ensure that this objective is met.
“… I would like to applaud the level of cooperation and support that the joint investigations have so far received culminating in two suspects being accounted for. We really appreciate this collaborative effort and we continue to appeal for more information which may enable us to bring to book whoever had a hand in this nefarious act.”
President Mnangagwa has already claimed that the a faction of the ruling party said to be led by former First Lady Grace Mugabe is suspected to be involved in the bombing.
However, the National Patriotic Front linked to former President Robert Mugabe, his wife, former Education Minister Jonathan Moyo and several others, who claim that Mugabe was removed toppled in a coup last November, have dismissed the claims as untrue and an attempt to discredit the party led by Retired Brigadier Ambrose Mutinhiri.
Mnangagwa came into power after the military seized all key state institutions and masterminded anti-Mugabe protests in what it codenamed Operation Restore Order, designed “to arrest criminals surrounding Mugabe.”
The former Zimbabwean strongman threw in the towel when parliament initiated impeachment proceedings against the then 93-year old ruler when he failed to voluntarily resign as being demanded by the people.
Indications are that the coup was aimed at stopping Mrs. Mugabe from taking over from her husband under the banner of a faction known as Generation 40.
Mugabe sacked Mnangagwa for undermining him in what was seen as his strategy to position his wife for the presidential post.