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Robert Mugabe to be exhumed as Grace gives up?

14 May 2021 at 07:13hrs | Views
After seriously looking at the summonses chief Zvimba issued on Grace Mugabe the former First Lady one is left wondering does chief Zvimba understa"nds his duties.  Zvimba District is a district of Mashonaland West Province, Zimbabwe.

The  Zvimba (Rozvi, Shona) people are the descendants of the original leader of the Zimba (or Zvimba) people who were led to the Zambezi River Valley area that is now part of Zimbabwe. 
In Zvimba tradition only a direct descendant of their founding leader after their arrival in that area of Africa is qualified to become chief. So we assume that the current chief Zvimba is indeed the son of Zimba. 
The chiefs have functions and they derive their power from the constitution and they empowered by the law to be so.

The main functions of chiefs include dispute settlement, codification of customary law, arrangement of ceremonies and festivals, organisation of communal labour and promotion of socioeconomic development. Chiefs have been involved in the development of their areas since precolonial times.

It is therefore expected that a chief is the authority on tradition and custom.
Traditional leaders in Zimbabwe play many roles in their communities. They help to promote and uphold cultural values, facilitate development and resolving of disputes in their communities. The institution of traditional leadership is regulated and monitored within the parameters of the Constitution. Since the passing of the Traditional Leaders Act in Zimbabwe in 1998, the state's recognition and incorporation of traditional leadership in governance has increased considerably. This has coincided with the emerging political and economic crisis in the country, with traditional leaders being increasingly empowered as actors in local governance alongside locally elected democratic governments.

So looking at the reasoning of Chief Zvimba one is left wondering at the wisdom of chief Zvimba or lack of it.

Firstly the chief charges Grace Mugabe for taking the body of the former President Robert Mugabe and bury him in the house.

This charge raises legal issues. In traditional set up a human being is buried by his relatives and not his wife.

The charge becomes defective and the chief missed the point. Grace can not be charged with burying Robert Mugabe. Grace is a stranger in the Mugabe family. She is a daughter in law.

The chief was supposed to summon the whole Mugabe family  if there was any errors or wrong doings during the funeral. You do not charge the wife of the deceased you can only deal with the male family members before you call the wife.

Since the wife is not from the Zvimba Clan she does not know their culture and custom. She can not be answerable  to the chief while her husbands are available.

In the Zvimba culture a wife is married into the family and she is ceremonially the wife of the Mugabes. So any wrong doing in following the cultures of the Mugabe's should be answered by the Mugabe people and not by Muroora the daughter in law.

Again the chief erred in failing to consider common law. A wife can have a say in where the husband could be buried but she does not lead the process. Burial is business of the close relatives. They guide the process and thus if the wife overrides the relatives it is the relatives who will face the chief or any traditional leader.
The other issue to consider is where was the chief when this taboo was done on his land. Did he have to wait for this long to correct a mistake.  

The chief again raised an issue of distribution of the deceased bonging's. The question the chief should answer is how does he know that the clothes of the deceased have not been distributed. The clothes distribution is not an issue for the king to raise. It's a mater for the headman.

Now the important issue is that the complainant is not a relative of the deceased. So How did he get involved in a family matter.

The excitement the chief is exhibiting in this case stinks.
 The chief is expected to be fair in his presiding over  cases.

Chief Zvimba did not give Grace Mugabe any chance to answer those charges. He already prescribe the sentence.  This means Mugabe's widow has been tried and convicted before she attends the hearing.

The chief did not ask Grace whose wish was it to have Mugabe buried where he was buried. How does the chief pin this on a grieving widow. This is undue process.  
There was enough time to talk about this before Mugabe was buried. The king did not engage Grace Mugabe to stop the funeral but he let the process commence. This was inefficiency and negligence on the part of the chief.

The chief must put into consideration that the process of exhumation is long and not led by the wife. There has to be a team from the health and local government the police and many stake holders. It is therefore an unlawful order which enforces a person to break the laws.

In every family male family members are the ones who take a leading role on who should be buried where and how. This is not the duty of the widow.

The widow is actually led and told what to do by the relatives. The chief must be impartial and just he must give a treatment or behaviour without favouritism or discrimination.  In this case the chief is has shown bias and unreasonableness in his duty.

After what Mugabe has done for the country we as a nation should be ashamed and embarrassed  for such a treatment on the widow of your hero.

Those in power now should remember that the way the widows of heroes are treated will be the same their widows will be treated. This harassment of Grace Mugabe should stop forthwith.

The way we are treating Mugabe even in death is appalling. This chief must take a step back and consider what he is doing. The name of the chiefs must be held in respect.
The whole charge sheet or summons by Chief Zvimba resembles a dog's breakfast.  The chief is being abusive vindictive and indeed being petty.

Source - Dr Masimba Mavaza
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