Vice President Constantino Chiwenga was admitted to a hospital in Harare on Thursday for what sources described as a “long-planned procedure”.

The 65-year-old retired army general arrived at the Trauma Centre in Borrowdale just before 3PM in a six-vehicle convoy flashing blue lights, with sirens turned off.

Chiwenga walked into the privately-owned hospital unaided and appeared in good physical health, a witness said.

A senior government source told ZimLive:

“He is due to have surgery to correct some discomfort in his stomach. It must be routine, otherwise he would have gone to China.”

It was unclear how long he would stay at the hospital.

Questions left for a spokesman for the presidency had not been answered.

Chiwenga, who recently married his long-time girlfriend Miniyothabo Baloyi, doubles as health minister. His choice of a private hospital will grate with Zimbabweans who accuse the Zanu PF government of neglecting public hospitals where more than 90 percent of the population receive their treatment.

The Trauma Centre is owned by Zimbabwe-born maverick doctor Vivek Solanki, who has Serbian roots. It is the go-to hospital for Zimbabwe’s elite.

Chiwenga had a gruelling weekend fulfilling appearances at the Heroes Day and Defence Forces Day commemorations.