'They want my head'

HARARE - Welshman Ncube, leader of the smaller Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) by legislative representation, has made sensational allegations that President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai are colluding to undermine him in Zimbabwe’s ruling coalition.

In a wide-ranging interview with the Daily News yesterday, the constitutional lawyer conceded there were no immediate prospects of him being recognised as a global political agreement (GPA) principal as the two other political players were conspiring to exclude him.

“We have raised this issue with the facilitator (South African president Jacob Zuma) and we have said it must be tabled before the troika, a full summit, that there is deliberate and contemptuous flouting of a Sadc resolution,” Ncube said.

This also comes as the Industry minister, who has been officially recognised by the regional bloc, on Monday walked out of the Second All-Stakeholders’ Conference on the Constitution after refusing to share the podium with his party nemesis Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara.

However, Zuma — Sadc’s point man on the Zimbabwean crisis and dialogue — managed to persuade the 51-year-old politician and his group to partake in the constitutional process, with the latter agreeing to participate in all thematic deliberations.

Mugabe, a livid Ncube said, was not only displaying contempt to Sadc, but to Zimbabwe’s courts too which had affirmed his position and entitlement to principality status.

According to him, the Zanu PF leader had even threatened to boycott the conference if Mutambara — who had been invited to the conference as a member of Cabinet — was not allowed on the high-table.

After making it abundantly clear that he will not countenance the executive’s dalliances and entertainment of Mutambara, who gracefully relinquished the MDC presidency to Ncube in January 2011, the ex-University of Zimbabwe lecturer has officially protested the conference brouhaha to Sadc, which is the guarantor of the power-sharing accord.

Crucially, Ncube said there was a plot to hijack the parliamentary-led constitution-making process by Mugabe and the PM, but was even more surprised by Tsvangirai’s complicity actions in “aiding and abetting” the 88-year-old ruler’s actions.

Both men could not immediately respond to the allegations as they are in Dubai and Botswana, respectively.

“And we equally don’t understand why the PM doesn’t realise that (he is working) against his interests and the MDC-T, which just like us, wants the full implementation of the GPA, Sadc resolutions (that say Ncube is a principal and not Mutambara) and to level the playing field in a matter of six months,” the MDC leader said, adding it was his fervent hope the regional body will tackle the matter robustly to ensure that its authority was not deliberately undermined and contemptuously.

While Mugabe has allegedly refused to replace Mutambara with Ncube to ensure that “old regimes and authoritarian institutions” are preserved, the robotics professor is also reportedly clinging to power by arguing that he inked the unity deal with Mugabe and Tsvangirai, and therefore his party has no right to recall him since his office was a constitutional creation.

“Mugabe is deliberately being malicious, spiteful and contemptuous (to me and) the MDC as a party. He is fully aware that... in terms of its structures, whether you are talking of the national council, executive, provinces and districts, are all under my control,” Ncube said.

“He is fully aware that my delegation to government, including minister Misihairabwi-Mushonga, David Coltart, (Moses) Mzila-Ndlovu, deputy minister Tapela and Makula are all under my authority — the authority of the party elected at congress,” he added.

The suave lawyer said it was pretty unfortunate that Mugabe was bent on “pretending that Mutambara can make binding decisions” when people at grassroots level “were not even having conversations about him.”
In these circumstances, Ncube said, his party could only conclude that the Zimbabwean President was bent on rendering the inclusive government dysfunctional, the GPA is not implemented and a roadmap, which guarantees free and fair elections is not achieved.

For instance, Mugabe’s conduct at the All Stakeholders’ Conference “was not only spiteful, but aimed at provoking us into abandoning the process altogether”, he claims.

Further, it was hard for the octogenarian and Zanu PF to deal with him during negotiations to amend the constitution due to principled stance, hence the negative stance, he added.

“From a strategic point of view, it’s clear that he (Mugabe) knows... he can never dictate to us (on the constitution issue), we will not yield on things that are important and, in particular, the reconstruction of the presidency,” Ncube told the Daily News.

“We will insist that the imperial presidency that he has occupied since 1987 is abolished, he knows that we will insist on devolution so that people can take control of developmental issues in their areas, which in turn reduces the centralisation of power... and basically to govern in a manner which is equitable,” the MDC leader said, adding this was critical in ensuring he does not “define what happens in every district and in a monarchical fashion”.

The MDC, he said, was also not going to yield on the running mates clause, which would help manage the country’s intractable succession issues.

In pronouncing that no one could separate the three GPA principals, Ncube says Mugabe was taking pot shots at him at the chaotic Harare constitutional conference.

 “It was a message directed at me that whatever happens, we will stick together.

“It was not a thoughtless statement, it was a well-calculated (one) to say you can stay away from these proceedings, we (will) never recognise you, but Mutambara.

“It was so blunt (and) where have you seen a whole president threatening not to speak unless Mutambara is allowed to be there?”

Added Ncube: “To further illustrate the extent of his warped thinking (and) if someone can stand up and say Parliament is not sovereign, where else in this world have you seen that?”

“The executive is accountable to Parliament and it must always understand that. Only a die-hard dictator will make such a statement.”

His MDC, the constitutional expert said, would vigorously resist Zanu PF’s attempts to make over 200 new amendments to the draft.

“What we are being asked to do is to allow Zanu PF to retract its compromises.

“In short, they want us to rewrite the constitution such that it becomes their manifesto. They want a Zanu PF manifesto to be fundamental law.”

Asked what he would do if Mugabe maintained this trajectory, Ncube said: “The only way forward is for Zanu PF to withdraw its attempts to renege on (earlier) agreements. That is the only way forward, there can be no other.”Welshman Ncube says he has raised the issue with GPA facilitator, South African President Jacob Zuma.

Comments (2)

This man created Mutambara himself and should deal with him alone. Dont suck in Tsvangirai or Mugabe

ngonizee - 26 October 2012

Deal with Mutambara alone.

ngonizee - 26 October 2012

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