By Canisius Mushibwe
HARARE, ZIMBABWE– Zimbabweans are divided over relocating the burial site for former President Robert Mugabe’s remains from his home village to the capital city Harare.
Following a court ruling that sided with traditional leaders to exhume Mugabe’s remains, contrary to the family’s wishes, the public has had mixed reactions.
Some citizens think the court’s ruling is in order, while others think it is impeding on the late President and family’s wishes, which preferred that Mugabe be buried at his estate.
The late president was buried in his hometown in Kutama, west of Harare in 2019 after long weeks of wrangles erupting to choose his final resting place.
Grace Mugabe, the widow to the deceased and other family members went against the government’s plans to bury the Zimbabwean independence hero at the National Heroes Acre.
However, a traditional court fined the former first lady and was supposed to pay five cows and two goats for burying her husband improperly, therefore ordering President Mugabe’s exhumation.
So far, the former first family has appealed to the magistrate court challenging the order but in a ruling on Friday, Magistrate Ruth Moyo gave powers to those permitted by law to remove the body of Mugabe from Kutama and rebury him at the National Heroes Acre.
However, the family has options to appeal to higher courts so that the decision is reversed.
ZANU PF Director of Information and Publicity Tafadzwa Mugwadi described the scenario as unfortunate because Mugabe was an icon that should not be subjected to such.
Mugwadi hopes the family will change their minds and let the matter settle.
Mugabe, a pan African leader who became president after the country’s liberation in 1980, died at the age of 95, two years after the Zimbabwean military staged a coup to end his 37-year rule.