Harare – Grace Mugabe says her leg was crushed by her husband’s armour-plated limousine and miracously survived, in her first public comments on the “freak accident” at Harare International Airport.
The 52-year-old First Lady said it was “a miracle” she could still walk.
“I am telling you I was run over by the armoured car… My leg was crushed and I thought I was not going to walk the rest of my life,” she said, in comments carried by the state-run Chronicle.
“We were returning from Singapore. We landed on Saturday morning at around 7.30am. I remember that vividly and there were people of course waiting to receive us. I was with officials from state occasions and also close to them was Dr Mushohwe (Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister),” she said.
“We were actually talking about this programme (Mrs Gumbochuma’s birthday party),” she said.
The First Lady said while discussing, she did not realise that the President was already in the car.
“Someone said ahh Amai, President is already in the car get in the car. As I moved towards the car, there was another vehicle close by and one of the officials was following with my bag. When I was about to get into the vehicle, I do not know what got into the head of the driver as he set the car in motion,” she said.
“I am telling you I was runover by the armoured car, believe me. My leg was crushed and I thought I was not going to walk the rest of my life. I thought I had suffered multiple fractures but let me tell you, God is there. I am walking with a bit of pain, I am a very strong person but I really suffered on that day because the leg was very painful. I had concluded that I was not going to wear shoes the rest of my life,” said Dr Mugabe.
She thanked God for her miraculous healing which has seen her managing to wear shoes and walk properly.
“I was really runover by a car and you later heard of the incident. I used to hear people saying they survived after being runover by cars and mine is also a miracle that I am walking today.
“This happened to me and that is why I say if you pray God will protect you.
“I really saw the hand of God that day,” said the First Lady.
She said she could not walk for a few days and on Tuesday she forced herself to go to work putting on slippers as she could not wear flat or high heeled shoes.
I had to go to the gym to massage myself on the leg so that I recover quickly and on Thursday I was feeling better,” said Dr Mugabe.
“I wanted to attend the Matabeleland North rally and I said God I am not going to miss it. I prayed that I would attend the rally without fail,” she said.
The First Lady said the President was surprised that she was putting on shoes.
She urged people to pray and depend on God for wisdom.
“You do not get wisdom because you are Amai Mugabe or President Mugabe, wisdom comes from God. I was taught by my mother that every day I should wake up and pray in the morning for God to give me more and more wisdom,” said Amai Mugabe.
She also said parents should be patient with their children when they misbehaved.
Amai Mugabe said young people were bound to be naughty at some point whether they were the President’s children or not.
Comments which seem to address the wayward behaviour that her sons have reportedly manifested in Johannesburg. News24 reported that they evicted from their apartment for unacceptable behaviour.
She said what was worrying was that children were drinking alcohol, taking drugs and engaging in anti-social activities that were harmful to their lives.
60 MDC Alliance youths reoccupy Harvest House as Khupe faces rebellion
‘We have just recovered Harvest House. It was a nice and clean retake’
Up to 60 MDC Alliance youths entered the party’s Harvest House headquarters in central Harare on Sunday night, four months after the building was occupied by the rival MDC-T party with the help of security services.
The youths told said that they had “found each other” with a section of the youth leadership loyal to MDC-T leader Thokozani Khupe.
“We have just recovered Harvest House. It was a nice and clean retake,” an MDC Alliance youth leader said from inside the building, asking not to be named because he said all would be explained at a virtual news conference at 10h00 on Monday.
Paul Gorekore, the MDC-T’s current youth chairman for Harare province, is believed to have facilitated the latest occupation, accusing Khupe of “aiding the suffering of the masses” through working with Zanu PF.
MDC Alliance youth chairman for Harare Denford Ngadziore is understood to have also entered Harvest House and will address Monday’s news conference.
In a brief statement, Gorekore said: “MDC-T Harare province (2014 structures) has taken over control of the party HQ tonight. This has been necessitated by our realisation of the need to unite the people in the fight for a better Zimbabwe.
“We as the youths have decided to go beyond our differences and unite to resolve the current crisis. We have been concerned by recent developments where the party (MDC-T) has been infiltrated by some Zanu PF elements battling to destroy the people’s movement thereby aiding the suffering of the masses.”
The youths said they had taken contingency measures, including changing locks and using chains to fortify the entrances.
Previous attempts by the MDC Alliance leadership to take back the building saw the party’s deputy leaders Tendai Biti and Lynette Karenyi-Kore being arrested. The youths said they expected police and the military to try and reclaim the building for Khupe. The military has previously denied facilitating the initial occupation.
The leadership of the MDC Alliance party has been disputed since a March Supreme Court judgement which said the party’s leader Nelson Chamisa was illegitimate for failing to follow the party constitution when he succeeded founding leader Morgan Tsvangirai in February 2018.
The court said Khupe, having been elected as Tsvangirai’s sole deputy at a previous congress held in 2014, should have assumed interim charge pending an extraordinary congress.
But by the time that judgement was delivered, Chamisa had led the MDC Alliance into an election in which he narrowly lost to Zanu PF leader Emmerson Mnangagwa. Khupe took part in the elections in July 2018 as leader of the MDC-T.
Khupe has used the judgement, which the MDC Alliance says was engineered by Zanu PF, to assert herself as leader of the MDC-T party, and also the Alliance, while moving to claim the party’s properties as well as funding due to it from the government.
Despite winning just two seats in parliament through proportional representation, she is now claiming leadership of over 100 MDC Alliance lawmakers and hundreds of councillors across the country. Those who reject her leadership have been recalled, including 24 MPs and Senators and dozens of councillors.
Thokozani Khupe’s MDC-T takes over the MDC Alliance name
Thokozani Khupe’s MDC-T says it has adopted the MDC Alliance brand with immediate effect and will use the name when nominating candidates for by-elections on October 9.
This was revealed by the MDC-T acting chairman Morgen Komichi on Saturday. He was speaking at the Morgan Richard Tsvangirai House, formerly Harvest House to mark the 21st anniversary of the original MDC.
However, in a statement posted on Twitter, the MDC Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa insisted on its identity and vowed to settle the “battle” politically. The statement read:
We are the MDC Alliance. We contested the 2018 election as the MDC Alliance under the Presidency of Nelson Chamisa.
Our members were unlawfully recalled on account of being members of the MDC Alliance. This battle will be settled politically.
Political power lies in the people.
The development did not come as a surprise as George Charamba, who is the Deputy Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet (Presidential Communications), in July hinted that the Khupe-led party will take over the MDC Alliance name.
Charamba made the stunning revelations on July 20th this year during an exchange with MDC Alliance secretary for elections Jacob Mafume.
Mafume had mocked ZANU PF and its leaders for allegedly trying to create a coalition government with Khupe’s MDC-T.
But Charamba, in typically abrasive fashion, hit back at Mafume, telling him that Khupe has taken over the opposition party and very soon, Chamisa will lose even the name of the party. Charamba retorted:
Except you have no party while pretending to be in organized opposition!!! Khupe amhanya nechinhu!! (she is now in the driving seat). Very soon you will be interdicted from using MDC-Anything!!! Watch the space!!!
United Kingdom-based Zimbabwean academic, Alex Magaisa, who has been urging the MDC Alliance to drop the “toxic” MDC brand and adopt a new name, said:
What has just happened should not shock anyone who has been following the MDC saga. It was foreseeable and it was written. The most important question is the response, which should be ready. There has never been a better time to demonstrate that people do not vote for party names.
War vets sue Mnangagwa over US$3,5 billion land compensation deal
A WAR veterans group has taken President Emmerson Mnangagwa to court seeking the nullification of the recently signed US$3,5 billion deal by government and commercial white farmers who lost their land during the country’s violent land reform process in the past two decades.
They are seeking to interdict Mnangagwa from implementing the agreement touted as the legendary deal that will bring finality to the country’s longstanding land question.
Mnangagwa on July 29 this year approved the billion-dollar compensation deal arguing it would bring to finality the emotive land issue as envisaged by the country’s constitution.
In an application now before the High Court, the War Veterans Pressure Group have sued the government over the deal.
The litigants are group national chair Amos Sigauke, Kossam Mutsinze, Shoorai Nyamangondo, Daphine Kanoti, Dadirai Njitimana, Rueben Zulu, Joseph Chinguwa, Hazvinei Machingura, Cairo Mhandu, Digmore Ndiya and Godfrey Gurira.
Agriculture Minister Anxious Masuka, Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube and representatives of the Commercial Farmers Union are also cited as respondents.
Sigauke and his co-applicants argue that Mnangagwa’s administration rushed to address the grievances of “white settlers” at a time the former fighters were yet to receive full compensation for the contributions and losses incurred during the liberation struggle.
“Since independence in 1980, the indigenous black race of Zimbabwe has been making futile representations to the government demanding necessary arrangements for subsequent payment of compensations for the various sufferance occasioned upon them by and during direct rule of the occupying force, the white race, including the return of their land to them,” Sigauke submitted.
The applicants added: “In short, the government as both led by the late Robert Mugabe and (now) Emmerson Mnangagwa has not seemed bothered to address positively the issue of indigenous black race’s compensation for the ills they suffered as a direct consequence of government or its agents’ actions.”
He said they were shocked to learn that the government had reached the decision to compensate white former farmers.
“It was therefore with shock and dismay that the genuine progressive war veterans, in particular those newly resettled on former settler occupied farms, on July 29 received news that the government, through Masuka and Ncube had entered into an exclusive compensation deed.”
It is the applicants’ contention that the global compensation deed would negatively impact the development of Zimbabwe because it left out key stakeholders in the form of the majority. This, the veterans argue, is tantamount to discrimination which effectively contravenes the rule of law.
Sigauke added that the government’s actions were void and unlawful because the Constitution provided that compensation can only proceed through an Act of Parliament.
The case is yet to be heard.