ED promotes Aug 1 shootings commander

President Emmerson Mnangagwa

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has promoted to the rank of Major-General Presidential Guard commander Brigadier-General Anselem Nhamo Sanyatwe, the man who commanded the military unit that reportedly shot at unarmed protesters, killing at least six civilians on August 1 as post-election violence rocked the capital.


Zimbabwe Defence Forces commander General Philip Valerio Sibanda (left) confers the rank to Presidential Guard commander Major-General Anselem Nhamo Sanyatwe recently

The army was called in after police had reportedly been overwhelmed by protesters over the delayed release of the presidential election results held two days earlier.

As the situation deteriorated, the soldiers were reportedly forced to use deadly force, killing six protesters.

Sanyatwe, who was commander of the crack Presidential Guard elite unit, was key in the coup that brought to an end former President Robert Mugabe’s 37-year-rule in November last year.

In a short citation seen by NewsDay, Commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces Philip Valerio Sibanda said he had seen it fit to recommend Sanyatwe and commander Military Intelligence Department Brigadier General Thomas Moyo’s promotions to higher ranks.

“In terms of Section 15 (1) (b) (2) of the Defence Act Chapter 11:02, His Excellency the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces (Emmerson Mnangagwa) may promote or temporarily appoint an officer to a higher rank.

“The Commander Defence Forces considered potential brigadier-generals suitable for promotion to the rank of major-general. His Excellency the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces consented and consequently was pleased to promote you, Brigadier-General Anselem Nhamo Sanyatwe to the substantive rank of major-general with effect from December 8, 2018,” the citation read.

Moyo was also elevated to major general.

Mnangagwa has also made key appointments within the police command as he moves to set up his own security structure that reflects his vision and the direction he wants to take the country.

A commission of inquiry set up by Mnangagwa to investigate the August 1 shootings has already produced a report that the President could make public this week.

Sanyatwe appeared before the commission of inquiry chaired by former South Africa President Kgalema Motlanthe and denied the military’s culpability in the killings, instead pointing to a “third force” and implying the opposition MDC, blamed for instigating the protests, harbours an armed section among its youth assembly.

Meanwhile, civil society activist Paddington Japajapa, who stands accused of inciting the political violence which rocked the capital on August 1, leading to the fatal shootings, was yesterday removed from remand for the second time after a State witness failed to come to court.

Japajapa, who is being charged with contravening section 36 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act, Chapter 9:23, through incitement to commit public violence, was freed by Harare magistrate Edwin Marecha.

The State had asked for a postponement of the matter, saying the witness had other commitments, but the magistrate ruled that the State would have to pursue the matter by way of summons if it so wishes.

Japajapa was represented by Simon Simango.

The State alleges that on July 31, Japajapa addressed a Press conference at a time the July 30 election results were being announced by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and threatened to call for chaos, claiming the elections had been rigged.

Caroline Mutimusakwa appeared for the State.


  1. There is something wrong with biased reporting. ” The army was called in after police had reportedly been overwhelmed by protesters over the delayed release of the presidential election results held two days earlier.” Election results for the Presidential election should be annoiunced within 5 days in terms of the law, so where is the delay?

    • Time to move on, leave the Editor to make fool out of himself and make your way out of the dramas of blame and hate

  2. Comment…@wezhira wezhira, newsday specialises in partisan reporting hence the so-called delay in releasing the presidential elections, despite the constitution stating otherwise. Even Nelson Chamisa called his supporters and those claiming the results were delayed STUPID because the presidential results were not delayed.

    • There is nothing sinister about the promotion, Major General Sanyatwe deserves this promotion because he worked hard in his previous position.His well deserved promotion should not be linked to the August 1 disturbances.

      • Mhondi dzevanhu. How can we not link it to Aug 1 when he was the commander in charge of murdering innocent civilians? Judgment day will surely come for these murderers. Our God is a patient God.

  3. Biased reporting creating divisions than gathering in families. You don’t deserve a good life in the dispensation.

    • Achakufungira kusvika wati yes, wamboti wadii kutonga kunoda kufunga chii, iwe unotongwa ndiwe unofanira kufunga kuti ndotongwa sei asi uchingotongeka saka bvuma kutongwa

  4. Even so, the opposition is a confused lot. On 1 August, the opposition went into the streets and committed acts of violence, purportedly for delayed presidential results. On 3 August, the results were annonced and Komichi of Mdc said those results were fake because the opposition had not taken any part in their verification. So which delayed results were were they demonstrating for?

  5. now i believe the gooooovernment of zimbabwe is illigitimate sanyatwe has killed innocent people unarmed civillians and you are proud to be crowned for shedding innocent blood may the blood of those you killed rise above you money you shall have but u wont be able enjoy it because your hands are full of blood as i write there is a child who is crying for his father you have killed him shame on the army of zimbabwe a real soldier does not take pride in killing the innocent remember on earth you also have an expiring date to die those you killed will be waiting for you there will be no army no gun to defemd yourself so many mysterious things will happen to you and your blood families CRY THE BLOOD OF THE DECEASED CRY

  6. A solder is trained to kill not to laughf they hv a licence to do so under the United Nations charter in the name of protecting peace&territorial intergrity and sovereignity from internal or foreign enermys..ndobasa racho hakusi kumahumbwe kuita gunners,usazoderera Gamba….makorokoto to the promoted General for outstanding previous ingagements longback

  7. His face can tell that he is full of blood in his hands. Ngozi ichapedza rudzi rwako Nhamo. Nhamo irimunzira. The wicked man promoted. Cry my beloved country.

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