Zimbabwean war veterans have reportedly given an order that former president Robert Mugabe and his Wife Grace should "publicly apologise" for "denigrating and disrespecting" them.

Grace reportedly attacked the war veterans verbally during several Zanu-PF rallies, and in particular "at the height" of the ruling party's factional fights last year.

The war veterans made a significant break from Mugabe in July 2016, when for the first in a rare rebuke of the nonagenarian, they issued a statement decrying his "dictatorial tendencies". They also called him "manipulative" and "egocentric".

At one time they reportedly told Mugabe to ditch the Generation 40 (G40), which was largely believed to be allied to his Grace, if he wanted to work with them. 

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The former freedom fighters had been a pillar for Mugabe for decades, always ready to defend the veteran politician, and "unleashing violence" on those who opposed his government.

They led seizures of white-owned commercial farms in what Mugabe said was a reversal of imbalances from the colonial era.

But according to NewsDay, addressing a former fighters’ indaba in Marondera last week, Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association secretary general Victor Matemadanda said "nothing short of a public apology by the Mugabes would restore their broken relationship".

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