MDC-M secretary-general Welshman Ncube is reported to be beefing up his security after recent revelations by an international website, WikiLeaks, which stated former US Ambassador to Zimbabwe Christopher Dell suggested he should be “pushed off the stage”.
Sources familiar with intelligence language last week said phrases such as “push off”, “eliminate” and “do away with” mean killing someone.
According to a controversial international website WikiLeaks’ recently released diplomatic files, Dell is quoted as saying: “Welshman Ncube has proven to be a deeply divisive and destructive player in the opposition ranks and the sooner he is pushed off the stage, the better”.
This has been interpreted to mean that Ncube should be killed.
MDC-M Bulawayo province spokesperson Edwin Ndlovu last week said the party was gravely concerned by such remarks.
“The party is deeply worried but not surprised by Dell’s statements. We hope that it won’t translate into practice,” said Ndlovu.
However, he said though the statement was made in 2007, it has no lifespan as it could be fulfilled any time.
“Such language should not be taken lightly, when we laid our eyes onto the document we got scared. Also to us, it confirms our views that America and Britain are not willing to work with emerging leaders in the mould of Ncube who is not prone to manipulation. He is seen as a stumbling block, hence to them he should be pushed off stage, whatever that means,” added Ndlovu.
Sources close to Ncube last week said plans were at an advanced stage to beef up his security.
“The party congress is drawing closer (early January) and he (Ncube) is in the running for the party presidency. Therefore we feel that there is urgent need to revamp his close security. . . anything is possible with Zimbabwe’s politics,” party sources said.
Brilliant Mhlanga, a media scholar at the University of Westminster in Britain, said Dell was the only person who “can help us in decoding his coded message” sent as a security intelligence brief.
“You will have to understand that Ambassador Dell was merely echoing their wish as influenced by their policy regarding Zimbabwean politics, in particular, seeking to entrench their change agenda.
“It is also imperative to understand that Ambassador Dell’s projections were conveyed as security intelligence brief. Normally, such messages tend to be marred with lots of coding and use of wording that even if picked by a layman in the street may mean a lot of things.
“One thing that is clear given his position on Professor Welshman Ncube is that it is Ambassador Dell alone who can help us in decoding his coded message.
However, Mhlanga added that “given our understanding of politics is it clear that the game of politics the world over is characterised by uncertainty and chaos, which may imply a figure that is perceived to be divisive may be ‘pushed off the stage’ by any means necessary.
“In such a situation, it is the ubiquity of the means used to deal with this character that remain to be engaged and decoded. Further, it is here that in assessing the sum total of actions as the means tend to either justify the end,” said Mhlanga.
Mhlanga echoed Ndlovu’s view that Ncube is seen as an impediment.
“One might speculate therefore that eliminating Professor Welshman Ncube could not be ruled out, especially if he was to be seen as a special impediment, which he seemed to be at the time. In that case anything remained possible in dealing with him,” he said.
Efforts to get a comment from Ncube were fruitless up to the time of going to press.