JOHANNESBURG – The nephew of the late Zimbabwean leader Robert Mugabe says it was because of President Emmerson Mnangagwa that his uncle had to die in Singapore.
Patrick Zhuwao, a former minister in the Mugabe government, who had since been expelled from Zanu–PF, said it was not the will of the former leader to die in a foreign land.
“He did not die in Zimbabwe because of Emmerson Mnangagwa. They [Zanu-PF] tormented him. They made him suffer and decided to call him a traitor. Now they want to pontificate over him. They did not want him in Zim,” Zhuwao said.
He was speaking at a memorial service held to honour Mugabe by the EFF in Soweto on Thursday.
Zhuwao also claimed that Mugabe had lived in a rented house in Singapore and was only admitted to hospital five days before his death because he did not feel welcome in Zimbabwe under the current crop of Zanu-PF leadership.
“He was tormented by the regime of Emmerson (Mnangagwa),” he said.
According to the nephew, who represented the family at the memorial service, Mugabe had left strict instructions to the family about how he wished to be buried.
“The family is now being coerced by Mnangagwa to ignore these instructions,” he said, referring to the tussle between the government and the family over where the ex-president would be buried.
However, reports on Thursday indicated that Mugabe would be buried in his village early next week and not at a national monument for liberation heroes in the capital, Harare.
Zhuwao called on the young people of Africa to keep Mugabe’s legacy alive by actively pursuing economic freedom.
He said Mugabe valued and understood young people, like EFF leader Julius Malema.
He related a story of how Mugabe had cut an African Union trip short to meet Malema, who had visited the country with a delegation from the ANC Youth League.
“When they (ANCYL) came back to South Africa they were hounded and chased out of the ANC because they resonated with what RG [Robert Gabriel, Mugabe’s first names] said, that the next struggle will be an economic struggle.
“He tasked us young people to wage the next struggle. His comrades took up arms against him because he wanted the young people to take over,” he added.