Some Zimbabweans hoped that the ousting of long-time autocrat Robert Mugabe in 2017 would usher in a more tolerant political scene as Mnangagwa sought to attract foreign investment.
But government critics have been frequently targeted by the police and security forces as the country’s economy tips into crisis.
The ZANU-PF government reacted furiously to the remarks, with information secretary Nick Mangwana describing the speech as an “insurgent rant”.
Mnangagwa promised a fresh start for Zimbabwe after decades of repression and economic decline under Mugabe.
But his presidency has been marked by brutal security crackdowns and rocketing inflation.