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Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Burial dispute: Mugabe family prevails, to bury him privately

Robert Mugabe’s family has prevailed and Zimbabwe’s former president will be buried in his rural home.

This is a final snub to his former comrades. It is not unprecedented: other national heroes have declined to be buried at the Heroes’ Acre national shrine in the capital, Harare, but not one of Robert Mugabe’s stature.

Speaking at her mother’s funeral last year, Grace Mugabe expressed her desire to reconcile with President Emmerson Mnangagwa, the man who ultimately won out in the pair’s battle to succeed Mr Mugabe as president. But this decision could strain relations and widen the rift.

In Harare’s Rufaro stadium, where preparations are under way for the arrival of his body, hundreds of mourners in the regalia of the governing Zanu-PF party have arrived. There is a jubilant mood.

But most of the people I spoke to are Mugabe supporters. One woman supported the family’s decision for a private burial.

“The way they got rid of him was not right, it was cruel,” she said.

Another mourner said she believed the former president needed to be buried with his family rather than with his comrades

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