The Sunday News
Norman Muchemwa, Harare Bureau
THE late former President, Cde Robert Mugabe, continues to be an enigma in death after revelations his memorial was held privately on 19 October — minus some family members and traditional chiefs from the Gushungo clan.
Cde Mugabe died on 6 September in Singapore and was buried 22 days later at the family rural home in Zvimba, Mashonaland West Province. Just as the nation was left waiting on where and when the late founding father of Zimbabwe would be interred after his demise, there were equally questions on when the memorial service would be held.
However, it has since emerged that the former First Family actually held a memorial mass in Zvimba and distributed Cde Mugabe’s clothes in accordance with traditional custom.
“Yes, we had the memorial service two weeks ago, on October 19, but it was a private family function. Why are you interested in knowing who attended the memorial service, is there anyone who comes to you asking details of those attending memorials at your own family events?” said Mr Walter Chidhakwa, the family spokesperson.
“You have been talking to Leo (Mugabe) all along, why are you coming to me now?”
Earlier in the week, the former President’s nephew, Mr Leo Mugabe, had told our Harare Bureau that preparations for the memorial were underway.
“There are some preparations going on concerning memorial for Gushungo. At the moment, preparations and consultations are still at family level and dates of the memorial will be announced in due course. I do not want to jump the gun . . . but like I said before, dates and the programme line-up will be announced in due course,” said Mr Mugabe.
When confronted with details of the recent event, he stuck to his guns, saying the family only distributed the deceased’s clothes.