By Mbekezeli Ncube
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa should have cleared out the hierarchy of the country’s security establishment following the White City bombing that nearly claimed the life of the national leader, a month before last year’s elections.
Former War Veterans Minister, career soldier and ex-freedom fighter Tshinga Dube told journalists in Bulawayo at a press briefing ahead of the launch of his memoirs this week that the incident was a threat to Zimbabwe’s national security. Dube’s book is titled ‘Quite Flows The Zambezi’.
“The problem that happened at White City was very very serious and in other countries, security forces definitely would not have been spared. In some countries, they would fire the head of State Security, head of Military Intelligence, the head of Police and so fourth,” Dube, a retired army colonel said.
On June 23 last year, and weeks before the general election, just as Mnangagwa wound up a nationwide whirlwind campaign, an explosion rocked White City Stadium.
The Zanu PF leader had just finished his address when the bomb exploded, injuring Vice President Kembo Mohadi, Defence Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri and Vice President Constantino Chiwenga’s wife, Mary.
Two presidential security aides were killed in the blast which left several more injured. Dube added Chiwenga was saved by his courtesy towards his (Dube) wife.
“We were sitting on the podium and just after the ceremony when people were leaving, General Chiwenga stopped to greet my wife. Just as they finished exchanging greetings, the grenade exploded. If he (VP Chiwenga) had not stopped, I think he would have been one of the casualties,” said Dube.
While a few people were reportedly arrested after the blast, nothing official has come through with authorities mum on progress in the investigation amid suspicion it had been an inside job with a planned hit on the President.