A Zimbabwean court upheld a traditional ruling by a chief on Friday that the remains of former President Robert Mugabe must be exhumed for reburial in a national shrine.
Mugabe’s children had the controversial decision of Chief Zvimba contested, arguing that he acted outside his jurisdiction when he found former first lady Grace Mugabe guilty of violating tradition by burying the strong man on his homestead.
Zimbabwe’s founding father died of cancer in 2019 at the age of 95.
His family maintained his final wish was that President Emmerson Mnangagwa not preside over his funeral.
The former first lady became ordered to permit the exhumation of the long-time ruler’s remains for reburial in a national shrine for luminaries of the country’s 1970s Liberation war. She was fined five cows and two goats.
Ms. Mugabe, who is allegedly indisposed and wanted to seek treatment in Singapore, was tried in absentia.
The traditional leader said he would give “those legally allowed the authority to exhume Mugabe’s remains from Kutama and bury them again on the National Heroes Acre in Harare”.
But Mugabe’s three children, Bona, Bellarmine Chatunga, and Tinotenda Robert appealed to a local county court, arguing that “Chief Zvimba committed an error of law in issuing an order that included a funeral order relating to the funeral of the late Robert Mugabe when the chief had no judicial authority ”. To interpret acts of the overriding legislation in its jurisdiction “.
The siblings said the boss made a mistake in” making an order that affects the property rights of a party that is not part of the proceedings “.
They accused the boss of” making a false statement of fact, tantamount to an error of law, in stating that the late Robert Mugabe was buried in a house. “
The The appeal was dismissed by a judge in the hometown of former ruler Chinhoyi.
After Mugabe’s death in Singapore in 2019, the government and his family clashed over his final resting place, which spanned almost three weeks .