Chief Zvimba summons Grace over Mugabe burial

May 13, 2021

TINASHE MAKICHI

Chief Zvimba has summoned former first lady Grace Mugabe to appear before his traditional court for “inappropriately” burying her husband, the late former president, Robert Mugabe.

Mugabe, who ruled Zimbabwe for 37 years before his exit following a military intervention, died aged 95 in Singapore on September 6, 2019.

He was buried at his family homestead in Zvimba, Mashonaland West.

Chief Zvimba now wants the former president’s widow to exhume the remains of the former president for reburial at a gravesite where his mother, Bona, is interred.

In summons dated April 29, 2021, Chief Zvimba ordered Grace to attend the village court next Thursday at Gonzo Guzha Hall in Murombedzi Growth Point at 9:30 AM. Grace faces a fine of five cattle and a goat.

Chief Zvimba accused Grace of allegedly abandoning Robert Gabriel Mugabe’s property which is scattered nationwide.

“All clothes of the deceased are supposed to be kept at his homestead and handled in line with our traditions.

I want you to rebury the late president in accordance with our traditions and in Zvimba at a place designated by the family and his late mother,” Chief Zvimba said.

Chief Zvimba also advised the former first lady to bring witnesses.

The burial of the former president was subject to dispute as traditional chiefs in 2019 demanded that the body be buried according to tradition.

Those requests formed part of a dispute over the final burial of Mugabe, who died almost two years after his departure from power.

The burial dispute also saw his family clashing with the government. The family wanted to bury him at his rural homestead but the government was pushing for the body to be buried at the national shrine.

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