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#RobertMugabe: Leader Snubs Heroes Acre, Going Home

Harare - The Mugabe family has thwarted any moves by government to have the late Robert Mugabe's remains buried at the Heroes Acre.    ...

Harare - The Mugabe family has thwarted any moves by government to have the late Robert Mugabe's remains buried at the Heroes Acre.    

Mugabe who passed on aged 95 in Singapore wanted to be interred at Kutama village, next to his late mother Bona.     

Mugabe will be accorded burial rights reserved for traditional chiefs, since he came from a chieftainship lineage. According to tradition, chiefs are buried in secret caves, while the act is only witnessed by chiefs and selected close aides. 

“His body will lie in state at Kutama on Sunday night. This will be followed by a private burial – either Monday or Tuesday – no National Heroes Acre. That’s the decision of the whole family,” his nephew Leo Mugabe had been told the AFP previously.
Robert Mugabe Coffin at his Harare Residence, the Blue Roof 

“Is he going to be buried as a chief, because this is what happens to chiefs,” a reporter asked family spokesperson, Leo Mugabe. The nephew responded saying, “this guy is clever, he asked a question and responded it.”

Mugabe’s final burial place became a point of dispute between his family and government. President Emmerson Mnangagwa had declared Mugabe a national hero after his death, indicating he should be buried at the national monument.

But the family said traditional chiefs in his homestead in the Zvimba region should decide where he should be buried. Some family members are still bitter over his ouster, and the role his former ally Mnangagwa played.

“As his immediate family, we have also observed with shock that the government of Zimbabwe is attempting to coerce us to accept a programme for the funeral and burial of the late Robert Gabriel Mugabe which is contrary to his wishes on how he wished to have his mortal remains interred.

“As the immediate family of the late Robert Gabriel Mugabe, we are ready and willing to work with the government of Zimbabwe to develop a programme for the funeral… which is in conformity to his wishes on how his mortal remains will be interred,” claimed Patrick Zhuwawo, Mugabe's nephew and former government minister. 

Mugabe's remains will be transported to his village in Zvimba after a funeral service at the giant National Sport Stadium. Thereafter, he will make the journey home to the village were he was born and schooled since his birth in 1924. 

The refusal by Mugabe to be buried at the national shrine, believed to have become a political shrine to settle personal political vendettas, is a clear snub towards Mnagagwa's government, who engineered his downfall in November 2017. 

Mugabe becomes the fourth hero to be buried in his village, after being declared a national hero under Mnangagwa's watch. The other three are: Dumiso Dabengwa, Phineas Makhurane and musical icon, Oliver Mtukudzi.  

During his reign, Mugabe denied the first president Canaan Banana to buried at the shrine, while founding ruling party father Nadabaningi Sithole was snubbed for joining opposition ranks. 

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