Recently retired army chief Constantino Chiwenga, who led a de facto coup last month that ended Robert Mugabe’s 37-year rule, was installed as Zimbabwe’s vice president in Harare on Thursday.
Chiwenga, whose appearance on state television on Nov. 15 preceded armed soldiers taking to the streets, paving the way for Emmerson Mnangagwa to become president, is the latest in a string of military leaders to be elevated to government positions.
The ceremony took place at the presidential state house in Harare. The oath of was administered by the Chief Justice in the presence of Mnangagwa and other top government functionaries.
First to take the oath of office before Chief Justice Luke Malaba is General Constantino Chiwenga (Rtd). pic.twitter.com/95rKPNLDvW— ZBC News Online (@ZBCNewsonline) December 28, 2017
Chiwenga’s elevation has been widely viewed as a token of appreciation after he played a key role in facilitating Mnangagwa’s ascendancy to power through the military’s Operation Restore Legacy which drove away “criminals” who had captured and surrounded Mugabe.
Mnangagwa is under pressure from opposition parties and the public to implement political reforms.
The two Vice Presidents General Constantino Chiwenga (Rtd) and Cde Kembo Mohadi chat before the swearing-in ceremony today. pic.twitter.com/7bvLaFF2Kg— The Herald Zimbabwe (@HeraldZimbabwe) December 28, 2017