Harare — As Robert Mugabe’s regime tottered and fell, one immediate benefit Zimbabweans celebrated with glee was the sudden absence of bribe-extracting police, who were a symbol of life under his rule. Endless police roadblocks were a notorious feature of every journey in Zimbabwe, with drivers reluctantly paying frequent bribes to evade long questioning over minor alleged offences. But across Harare and along major national routes, barely a single police officer has been spotted since the military took over on November 14 and forced Mugabe to step down after 37 years in power. During the turmoil, the absence of police — and the presence of the occasional armoured military vehicle on the streets — shed light on the dramatic political struggle fought behind closed doors. Police commissioner Augustine Chihuri remained a key supporter of Mugabe and his wife Grace until the end — while army chief general Constantino Chiwenga led the military effort to unseat the president. For ordinary ...

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