Thursday 19 September 2019
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africanews - 8 days ago

Mugabe s body expected in Zimbabwe, burial discussions continue

Zimbabwe’s founding president Roberty Mugabe will be buried on on Sunday, September 15, having passed on last week in Singapore, at the age of 95. Having ruled the Southern African nation for 37 years, until he was ousted by the army in November 2017, Mugabe’s legacy continues to divide opinions at home and abroad. The government and his family also reportedly involved in discussions over the location of his final resting place. While the government wants to bury him in the National Heroes’ Acre, the family is reportedly opposed to the idea, arguing that Mugabe had since fallen out with the current regime. In this article, we will share the latest news and updates on Mugabe’s final journey into the afterlife. Plane off to Singapore Burial program announced Declared national hero Reactions and tributes Death announcement September 11: Mugabe’s body expected today Former president Robert Mugabe’s body was expected in the country later on Wednesday, a family spokesman said, but his final resting place remained a source of mystery amid a dispute between some family members and the government. “They have left Singapore and we are expecting his body at 3:00 p.m. (1300 GMT) at the airport and he will be received by family and government,” Leo Mugabe, a nephew and family spokesman, told Reuters. Mugabe’s wife Grace and Zimbabwean Vice President Kembo Mohadi are among those accompanying the body of the former leader, he added. A private jet departed from Singapore’s international airport in the direction of southern Africa on Wednesday morning, according to, a plane tracking website. Earlier, a police motorcade escorted vehicles to the airport from the Singapore Casket, a funeral parlour where Mugabe’s body was being held. On Thursday, ordinary Zimbabweans and supporters are expected to pay their last respects to Mugabe at a Harare soccer stadium, where the body will lie in state before being taken to his rural home in Kutama, 85 km (52 miles) from the capital, the family spokesman said. September 9: Bringing Mugabe’s body home A family spokesperson confirmed on Monday that a plane left Zimbabwe for Singapore carrying government officials and relatives to bring home the body of Robert Mugabe. Leo Mugabe, the late president’s nephew and family spokesman, said a charter plane left Harare for Singapore just after 9 a.m. (0700 GMT) on Monday. Mugabe’s body was expected to arrive in Zimbabwe on Wednesday at 3 p.m. (1300 GMT), Leo Mugabe told Reuters. September 8: Burial program announced Zimbabwe’s presidency announced on Sunday that the country’s former president, Robert Mugabe is scheduled to be buried on Sunday, September 15, in a location yet to be determined. “His remains are expected on Wednesday afternoon (in Zimbabwe). The official funeral is scheduled for Saturday, his funeral will take place on Sunday (next),” President George Charamba told AFP, adding that the place of his funeral would be determined by his family. Since his death, discussions between his family and the government about how to organize his funeral have been taking place. Mugabe’s family is pushing back against the government’s plan to bury him at the National Heroes Acre monument in Harare and wants him to be interred in his home village, relatives have told Reuters. When pressed on where Mugabe would be buried, Leo Mugabe was non-committal. “Mugabe was a chief and he will be buried in accordance with tradition. The chiefs have not told us where he will be buried, so it is not clear yet. I also don’t know,” he said. In some parts of Zimbabwe, burials of chiefs are a secret affair and people are only told the resting place afterwards. Mugabe’s resting place has been a topic of discussion since the Zimbabwe Independent newspaper reported last month that Mugabe would snub the offer of a burial at National Heroes Acre – a site reserved for the country’s heroes – because he felt bitter about the way he was removed from power. The Zimbabwean government said in a memo sent to embassies that it planned to hold a state funeral for Mugabe in the National Sports Stadium on Saturday, with a burial ceremony on Sunday, but it did not say where the burial would be. If Mugabe is buried in Kutama village, 85 km (50 miles) from Harare, it would be a major rebuke for his successor, President Emmerson Mnangagwa, and the ruling ZANU-PF party that Mugabe helped to found. September 6: National hero Zimbabwe declared Robert Mugabe a national hero on Friday, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said, and the country would be in national mourning until the former leader was buried. Tributes and reactions Revered by many as a liberator who freed his people from white minority rule, Mugabe was vilified by others for wrecking one of Africa’s most promising economies and ruthlessly crushing his opponents. Most residents in downtown Harare said on Saturday that they were saddened by Mugabe’s death since he was their liberator and had broadened access to education. “Even now we have livestock we keep in the rural areas because of him, so it’s painful to lose our father, our grandfather who helped us to learn and go to school,” said Tongai Huni, a fruit vendor. Others expressed anger that Mugabe had left the economy in a sorry state, with hyperinflation and mass unemployment. “We are just trying to deal with … the harm that he did,” said Margaret Shumba, another Harare resident. I learnt this morning about the passing of an African liberation icon great Pan-Africanist, His Excellency Robert Mugabe. I join edmnangagwa, the people of Zimbabwe and the entire African continent in mourning the demise of this great son of Africa. May his soul rest in peace.— Yoweri K Museveni (KagutaMuseveni) September 6, 2019 I’m saddened by the passing of our martyr giant of the African Revolution cde President Robert Mugabe. Let’s continue the fight protect his legacy. We must not allow our enemies to tell us how to remember we know our heroes. May his soul rest in revolutionary peace.— Julius Sello Malema (@Julius_S_Malema) September 6, 2019 1/3 My condolences to the Mugabe family and Africa for the passing on of Zimbabwe’s founding President.This is a dark moment for the family because a giant among them has fallen. May the Lord comfort them.— nelson chamisa (@nelsonchamisa) September 6, 2019 September 6: Death announcement Mugabe died on Friday aged 95 in Singapore, where he had long received medical treatment. He had dominated Zimbabwean politics for almost four decades from independence in 1980 until he was removed by his own army in a November 2017 coup. It is with the utmost sadness that I announce the passing on of Zimbabwe’s founding father and former President, Cde Robert Mugabe (1/2)— President of Zimbabwe (@edmnangagwa) September 6, 2019

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