Velaphi Ncube declared National hero.
Zanu-PF Secretary for Administration Cde Obert Mpofu confirmed last night that Cde Ncube was accorded a National hero status by President Mnangagwa and the ruling party for his sterling contribution to the liberation struggle. Cde Mpofu also delivered the message to the family and mourners gathered at Cde Ncube’s residence at New Lobengula in Bulawayo.
“Ubaba uVelaphi Ncube has been declared a national hero. That is the message from the President. He has been given the honour of national hero because of his work during the liberation struggle,” said Cde Mpofu. He added that Government and the ruling party were waiting for the family to set the date for burial. Family spokesman Retired Assistant Commissioner Claydon Sewulah thanked President Mnangagwa for the honour bestowed on Cde Ncube.
“This honour does not come easy, we all wish for it. If you get it you know you are one of the few. Thank you Baba Mpofu and we are asking you to pass our gratitude to President Mnangagwa,” he said.
Cde Ncube (82) died at the United Bulawayo Hospitals where he had been admitted with a diabetes-related ailment. He was one of the pioneer guerrillas under the Zimbabwe People’s Revolutionary Army (Zipra). Soon after his death, Zanu-PF Bulawayo province applied for national hero status.
“He was involved at all levels of the liberation struggle. He was involved at all levels of political leadership. There is no reason whatsoever for denying him that right. That is the appropriate consideration befitting a man of his calibre,” said Politburo member Cde Absalom Sikhosana soon after his death.
He said Cde Ncube served in several positions both in the military wing during the war of liberation and in politics. Cde Sikhosana said Cde Ncube was once a member of the Provincial Council, Central Committee and National Consultative Assembly.
His wife, Mrs Margaret Velaphi Ncube told our sister paper Chronicle that the family was devastated by her husband’s death.
“He was a pillar of strength in the family and he leaves behind a hole that no one will fill. He was a family unifier and we all relied on him. He was committed to his family and the country,” said Mrs Ncube. Cde Ncube joined the liberation struggle in the early 1960s. He was among the first “Group of 12” to undertake military training in Egypt in 1962.
In 1966, he and his colleagues took advantage of the political instability in the Congo where they raided the Congolese rebels, poisoned them before looting their weapons. His mission led to the first smuggling of weapons into Southern Rhodesia. He also served a jail term for his activities at Grey Prison, now known as Bulawayo Prison.
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