THE late former President Mugabe’s family yesterday rubbished moves by a Zvimba traditional leader to summon former First Lady Grace Mugabe to appear before his traditional court on a charge of “improper” burial of the country’s former strongman.
Mugabe, who was deposed by the military in a coup in November 2017, died a bitter man in September 2019 at a hospital in Singapore. The period leading to his burial was marred by haggling over his place of interment between his family and the government. The family buried him at his rural home in Zvimba, insisting it was his wish, while the government wanted him buried at the National Heroes Acre, where its centrepiece marque depicts him as the ultimate hero.
Chief Zvimba has summoned Mugabe’s widow Grace to his village court at Murombedzi Growth Point to answer to a charge of burying her husband at his homestead.
“You are facing charges of burying the late Robert Gabriel Mugabe at his homestead. This is unheard of in Chief Zvimba’s area,” summons by Chief Zvimba to Grace dated April 29, 2021 read in part.
This was after a Zanu-PF official identified as Tinos Manongovere approached the court demanding that Grace be tried for the “irregular” burial of Mugabe.
Grace is also accused of abandoning Mugabe’s properties which are scattered nationwide.
Chief Zvimba said he wanted Grace to bury the late President in accordance with “our traditions and in Zvimba at a place designated by the family and his late mother”.
“These charges you are facing attract a fine of five cattle and a goat,” Chief Zvimba, who is a brother to the late leader, said.
Chief Zvimba warned that a ruling will be made even if Grace snubs the summons.
Grace was asked to propose a date with appropriate authorities if she was unable to attend the village court next week.