Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has reportedly charged that some elements within the country’s security forces are uncontrollable, adding that the recent clashes between soldiers and the police in Harare were "regrettable and should never again happen".
Mugabe said this while speaking during this year's Heroes Day celebration at the National Heroes Acre in the capital on Tuesday.
According to New Zimbabwe.com, Mugabe told thousands of his supporters that there were certain elements within the security forces that were now uncontrollable.
"Some elements [in the security services] are beginning to get out of control. That incident where soldiers and police clashed is regrettable and should never again happen. If these police and the army cross paths, how will they protect the people and contain peace in the country?," Mugabe reportedly quizzed.
The veteran leader said he hoped for peaceful elections in 2018 as well as peace within his fractured ruling Zanu-PF party and other opposition parties.
Early this month, a group of soldiers who were armed with sjamboks, logs, and sticks chased down members of the country's infamous police along Robert Mugabe Road in Harare.
The soldiers reportedly came from all directions and drove some of the police officers into the Harare central police station.
It was not immediately clear at the time why the soldiers attacked the police, but some witnesses alleged that the soldiers were reiterating against spikes that had been thrown by the police under military vehicles in the capital.
A few days after the chaotic incident, the police and defence forces wrote in a joint statement that: "we categorically condemn that incident and assure the nation that a joint team has been set up to conduct comprehensive investigations."