Hundreds of people yesterday waited in vain at the late former President Robert Mugabe’s rural home in Zvimba where his body was scheduled to lie in state after the programme was cancelled last hour.
Mugabe’s body is expected at his rural home in Zvimba today to afford people to bid farewell to the statesman, family spokesperson Mr Leo Mugabe has said.
The body was initially set to be taken to Zvimba yesterday, but the programme changed due to other pressing issues.
In an interview at Mugabe’s rural homestead in Zvimba yesterday, Mr Mugabe said the body leaves Harare at 10am.
“We have been informed by Chief Zvimba, that the programme has changed. So I was told to inform the gathering of the changes to the programme.
“However, we were not informed of the reasons for the postponement. The body was supposed to be here today. As you can see, thousands of people have already gathered here to bid farewell to their own son.
“I am not sure what caused the postponement. I heard the former First Lady Grace Mugabe wanted to rest. Like any other human being she needs a rest,” he said.
Mr Mugabe said the body might go to Zvimba by road as requested by Norton residents and people from other surrounding areas.
“We will inform those leading the proceedings on the latest development. Our plan was to have his body come by road to enable people from Norton and other surrounding areas to pay last respects to their former President.
“Some might not get transport to ferry them to Zvimba, so we are organising that the body passes through by road,” he said.
Mr Mugabe said after the rural proceedings, the body will be taken to a mortuary, where it will lie in state for about 30 days to pave way for the construction of a mausoleum at the National Heroes Acre.
Former President Mugabe will be buried in the mausoleum that is being constructed on top of a hill at the national shrine.
Government, on Friday, conferred the leader the special honour, a first at the national shrine.
“Thereafter, we will take the body, on Tuesday, back (to Harare) and take it to the mortuary for preservation for roughly 30 days until the Heroes Acre is ready” he said.
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