Uganda denounces army take over, Mugabe house arrest

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Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe with Uganda President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni

Uganda has joined SADC countries to call for calm in Zimbabwe where the army took over power and placed President Robert Mugabe under house arrest.

The State Minister for International Relations, Henry Okello Oryem, has told Daily Monitor that “under the current African Union rules, no African state can recognise a military coup on the continent by any military officer or group.

The minister reportedly insisted that Mugabe’s government is “the legitimate leadership” and that people in both countries enjoy cordial relationships.

Oryem told the newspaper that the government has directed the Ugandan mission in South Africa to update it on developments in Harare.

Namibia’s deputy Prime Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, also issued a statement saying Government of Namibia has been following the unfolding developments in Zimbabwe with concern, and associates itself with the Statement issued on behalf of SADC.

“Namibia notes that the Zimbabwe Defence Force has assured the Zimbabwe public and the international community at large that they have not overthrown the Government of Zimbabwe and that they have no intention to take over the governance of the country,” Nandi said.

Earlier, South African President Jacob Zuma said he had talked to Mugabe on phone who confirmed he was under house arrest.

Nigeria President Muhammadu Buhari also called for calm and urged the military not to illegally remove the government and breach the constitution.

Buhari also urged all political and military stakeholders in the country to avoid any action that may plunge Zimbabwe into unnecessary conflict and impact negatively on the region.

“Every attempt must be made to resolve all contentious issues by constitutional means in Zimbabwe to save the country from avoidable political instability,” he said in a statement issued Wednesday by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina.

President Buhari’s appeal came in the wake of reported “military takeover” as a result of rising political tension in the southern African country, following President Robert Mugabe’s recent removal of his vice, Mr Emmerson Mnangagwa.