‘New officers must put national values first’

Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces President Mnangagwa inspects a parade at the Commissioning of the Regular Officer Cadet Course 3/39/22 at the Zimbabwe Military Academy in Gweru on Friday.

PRESIDENT Mnangagwa has ordered newly commissioned Zimbabwe National Army officers to understand and have national values at heart so they can lead effectively while defending the sovereignty of the nation.

He was speaking when he commissioned the new regular officers at the pass out parade of the officer cadet course 3/39/22 at the Zimbabwe Military Academy in Gweru on Friday. 

President Mnangagwa was particularly pleased by the course content which allows officers, during their training, to visit sites of great national history.

“The inclusion of the civil-military relations package is crucial for a strong and disciplined Defence Force,” said President Mnangagwa.

“As our future military leaders, it is essential that you have a deep understanding and appreciation of our national values and ethos.

“More so, that our military is a unifying force, which comes from the people as well as protects them and defends our national identity, rich history, unity, peace and harmony.

“It is pleasing that the Zimbabwe Military Academy continues to facilitate visits by cadets to liberation war shrines, with this group having toured Chimoio in Mozambique and Freedom Camp in Zambia, as well as the Kamungoma Battle Site in Gutu.

“In line with the ongoing recognition and memorialisation of historic aspects of our liberation war heritage, I challenge the Defence Forces to broaden the number of sites visited and extend the opportunity of such tours to already serving members”.

The President said the newly commissioned officers exhibited leadership qualities during their training.

“The resolve to achieve your aspirations along with the leadership qualities you exhibited during training have earned you the right to be commissioned in the Zimbabwe National Army.

“Your decision to join the Defence Forces in the officers’ corps is commendable and a noble calling which should never be taken lightly,” said President Mnangagwa.

Under the leadership of President Mnangagwa, Zimbabwe is being configured towards the attainment of an empowered upper middle income society by 2030.

To that end, education has been identified as a vital cog towards the attainment of this vision and the education sector has been remodelled to Education 5.0, which seeks to build a knowledge driven economy.

In that regard, President Mnangagwa expressed satisfaction that the Zimbabwe Defence Forces is equipping its officers with key technological competences which again is the bedrock of the modern world.

“Training on information communication technology undertaken during this course was meant to enhance the officer cadets’ computer literacy and introduce appropriate ICT concepts.

“Capabilities in this regard will go a long way towards enriching the understanding of computerised military equipment and the impact of technology in the realm of modern warfare by our young officers, especially in view of developments in artificial intelligence.

“Science, technology and innovation are critical cogs to the modernisation of the Defence Forces. I challenge the Zimbabwe Defence Forces across its training institutions, departments and agencies to scale up focus on innovation and technology development to leap forward and broaden our capabilities within the military sector.

“The graduating course before us is the 12th intake to graduate with a Diploma in Military Training and Education, which is offered in association with Midlands State University.

“As Chancellor, I urge Midlands State University to continue providing academic guidance to the academy, anchored by our heritage-based Education 5.0 model, in running the diploma programme.

“Such exposure must serve as a constant reminder of the need to jealously guard and bravely defend our independence, freedom and democracy for perpetuity,” said the President.

He told the graduating officers that “serving in the Defence Forces is a life of service to a great nation and entails placing the interests of our people and country ahead of personal interests.

“This calls for the highest standards of honour and integrity amongst you. Always remember that you are not just joining an organisation; you are becoming part of a broader family which also thrives on honour, respect, courage, decisiveness, dependability, initiative and tact.

“As Commander in Chief, I demand unflinching patriotism and loyalty, while discipline, sacrifice, dependability and selflessness must be exhibited at all times,” said President Mnangagwa.


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