Youth leader of Zimbabwe's ruling party apologizes to military on state TV

HARARE (Reuters) - The head of the youth wing of Zimbabwe’s ruling party on Wednesday publicly apologized on state television to the military, which has seized power saying it aims to isolate “criminals” in President Robert Mugabe’s entourage.

Kudzai Chipanga, whose powerful ZANU-PF youth wing has been a strong supporter of Mugabe and his wife Grace, said he had voluntarily given his statement apologizing for denigrating defense forces chief General Constantino Chiwenga.

It was an abrupt about-face for Chipanga, who on Tuesday accused the army chief of subverting the constitution.

“Defending the revolution and our leader and president is an ideal we live for and if need be it is a principle we are prepared to die for,” Chipanga had said at the party’s headquarters in Harare.

Reporting by MacDonald Dzirutwe; Editing by Ed Stoddard and Andrew Roche