Intel brief: Tanzania's CDF Gen Mabeyo to retire end of this month, CoS Lt Gen Mkingule likely successor, spy chief Diwani and police head Sirro said to be on way out too

    Bottom Line Up Front

    • General Mabeyo's retirement is understood to be voluntary.
    • He was instrumental in making sure the East African nation's constitution was adhered to, and eventually made March 2021 smooth transfer of power to incumbent president Samia Suluhus Hassan following death of her predecessor John Magufuli possible.
    • He was accused of being one the deceased authoritarian ruler's "enablers."
    • Lt General Matthew Mtengule is likely successor.
    • Spymaster Diwani Athumani and Police Chief Simon Sirro are said to be on their way out too.

    What happened?

    Yesterday, Monday June 6, 2022 it was announced that the Chief of Staff, General Venance Mabeyo is retiring later this month.

    Who exactly is General Mabeyo?

    General Venance Mabeyo is the eighth Chief of Defense Forces to lead the Tanzania People's Defense Force since his appointment on February 6, 2017 by the former President and Commander-in-Chief of the United Republic of Tanzania for the fifth term, the late John Magufuli.

    Mabeyo, after serving in the Army for various positions from January 1, 1979, will retire at the end of this month.

    He was born on July 1, 1956 in Magu district in Mwanza region and received his primary education at Namibu school in Mara region from 1965 to 1971.

    He started his secondary education at Nyegezi Seminary from 1972 to 1975, then went on to form five and six Mzumbe Secondary from 1976 to 1977.

    General Venance Mabeyo joined the Tanzania People's Defense Force on January 1, 1979 and attended a student officer course and obtained a commission in 1980 as a 2nd Lieutenant.

    • July 1980: 2nd Lieutenant
    • August 1981: Lieutenant
    • January 1987: Captain
    • October 1991: Major
    • June 1998: Lieutenant Colonel
    • May 2006: Colonel
    • September 2010: Brigadier General
    • September 2014: Major General
    • June 2016: Lieutenant General
    • February 2017: General

    General Venance Mabeyo attended various courses at home and abroad, some of which were in Kenya, India, Canada and the United States.

    General Venance Mabeyo in his service to the Tanzania People's Defense Forces held various positions including Defence Attache in Rwanda, Assistant Chief of Army Staff, Head of Security and Identification Branch and Commander-in-Chief of TPDF.

    General Venance Mabeyo has been awarded various medals;

    • 20 Years of TPDF Long Service Medal.
    • 40th annual TPDF Medal.
    • Medal of noble service.
    • Medal of Comoros and Anjouan.
    • 50 Years of Independence Medal
    • 50 Years of Union Medal 50 years of TPDF
    • 60 Years of Independence of Mainland Tanzania

    Retirement or sacking?

    He retires voluntarily. Since President Samia Suluhu came to power, it was known that General Mabeyo was about to retire but was forced to remain in power to help President Samia during the transition.

    Who is expected to succeed him?

    Potential successor is current TPDF's Chief of Staff Leutenant General Matthew Mkingule (photo below)

    However, the likelihood of Lieutenant General Mkingule to become the next CDF does not mean he must. Although he is currenly the second topmost TPDF officer, and the only Lieutenant General, the president has the power overlook him to promote one of any of dozen or so Major Generals instead, although that is almost certainly unlikely.

    The good?

    Perhaps the most significant was him being part of a "holy trinity" that made great strides in ensuring that the Constitution was adhered to, following the death of President John Magufuli in March 2021. Intelligence reports confirmed about attempts to prevent then Vice President Samia Suluhu Hassan from consitutionally succeeding late Magufuli.

    Reports indicated that General Mabeyo, Inspector General of Police Simon Sirro - and a leading opposition politician, Mr. Zitto Kabwe, played crucial - yet virtually unknown - role in making the smooth transfer of power possible.

    It should be noted that like IGP Sirro, General Mabeyo hails from late Magufuli's Lake Zone, and they would have been expected to be among "anti-Samia" but they instead ralied behind her and the consituation, and she was eventually sworn-in as the 6th President of the United Republic.

    The bad?

    Probably not intentionally, but General Mabeyo was accused of being one of Magufuli's "enablers," the deceased tyrant's "siloviki", the people who oversaw the regime's sustained campaigns of brutality.

    However, he understandably stood no chance of going against the wishes of his Commander-in-Chief Magufuli.

    Any other high level retirements coming soon?

    Highly likely.

    Credible sources say both Director General of the Tanzania Intelligence and Security Service (TISS) Diwani Rajabu and IGP Sirro are on their way out too. Probably as early as later this month if not early July.

    DGIS Diwani Athumani (Left), Gen Mabeyo (Middle), IGP Sirro (Right)

    SOURCE: Traslated from Swahili from Barua Ya Chahali

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    Evarist Chahali

    Evarist Chahali

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