Bomb scare halts President Mnangagwa’s Victoria Falls trip

President Emmerson Mnangagwa was on Friday morning forced to abort a trip to Victoria Falls following a bomb scare at the Victoria Falls International Airport.

Mnangagwa who was due to officiate at a conference was forced to return to Harare.

Deputy Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet (Presidential Communications), George Charamba, confirmed that a bomb threat was received on Friday from an anonymous source.

“This morning Zimbabwe Airport Authorities were made aware of an email sent through Fastjet Airline by one John Doe claiming credible bomb firearm threat targeting Zimbabwe airports,” Charamba said in a statement.

“As a  precaution, the country’s security system is now on heightened alert following this message whose source and credibility is being investigated.”

A quick online research shows that John Doe like the name Jane Doe are multiple-use placeholder names that are used in the United States and the United Kingdom when the true name of a person is unknown or is intentionally concealed

The presidential spokesperson said despite the terrorism warning, Zimbabwe is a peaceful country and all its ports of entry were well secured. 

“Such alerts on possible terror attacks are taken and treated very seriously as nothing should be left to chance,” Charamba said.

“The nation is urged to remain calm while investigations are underway, the result of which would be made public by relevant arms of government once investigations are concluded. His Excellency, the President Dr ED Mnangagwa who this morning was slated to address a meeting in the prime resort city of Victoria Falls has had to suspend his trip to allow for investigations which are already underway.”

In 2018, Mnangagwa survived an apparent bomb attack at a Zanu PF rally at White City Stadium in Bulawayo.

Meanwhile, police in Zimbabwe are also seeking a man shown in a viral video shouting and threatening to assassinate President Mnangagwa while brandishing two firearms. 

The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) on Monday appealed for information that could lead to the identification and arrest of the man.

“The man is wearing a black suit and a purple shirt. Anyone with information to report at any nearest police station,” police said.

In the video, the man, speaking in fluent Shona, issued threats against President Mnangagwa who he accused of splurging on government ministers’ luxury vehicles while ignoring public hospitals that continue to run without essential medicine.

“If we kill you (Mnangagwa), Zimbabwe is gonna take a new direction. Do you understand, Zimbabwe is gonna be better without you,” he says in between gestures he interchanges with lifting of his pistols.

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