BY CHARLES LAITON
Family members of the late former President Robert Mugabe yesterday appointed the late nationalist’s only daughter, Bona Mutsahuni-Chikore, the executor of her father’s multi-million dollar estate, during the edict meeting that was held at the Master of the High Court’s office.
Bona was elected ahead of all other family members at a meeting that was chaired by the Master of the High Court, Eldered Mutasa.
Present during the meeting were former First Lady Grace Mugabe, Bona, her husband Simbarashe Chikore, and an unidentified relative.
Mugabe’s two sons, Robert Junior and Chatunga Bellarmine, were not present and gave Mutasa power of attorney to appoint their sister as the executor.
The family lawyer, Advocate Terrence Hussein, of Hussein Ranchod & Company, confirmed the development, saying the meeting went on well without hitches and that Bona would soon begin the process of running the affairs of the estate, which apparently will take some time to complete.
“We attended the Master’s office this morning (yesterday) with the family after the Master had called the family to decide the status of the estate of the late former President, Comrade (Robert) Mugabe,” he said.
“As you know, this is an edict meeting whereby he briefed the family on what should be done and then he asked whom they would want to suggest as the executor to run the affairs of the estate. The family set down and unanimously agreed that it would be Mrs Chikore, the late President’s daughter.”
Hussein further said the whole process of appointing Bona as the executor had gone very well, adding that she would now be in the shoes of her late father in every matter that involves his wealth.
“The law requires the Master to appoint one of the family members and that is what we sat for today. Surprise, surprise, of all surprises, the apple of his eye, and first daughter, Bona Chikore, has been appointed the executor of her late father’s estate,” Hussein said.
The family lawyer also said now that Bona had been appointed the executor, a distribution account would soon be opened with a list of all the debtors and creditors following which beneficiaries of the estate would be paid accordingly.
Turning to conflicting reports about the ownership of Gushungo Dairies, which was said not to be part of Mugabe’s estate, Hussein said the dairy company did not belong to the former Head of State.
“Talking of Gushungo Dairies, which is a private limited company …, no one can own a company. What you can own in a company are shares. Cde Mugabe did not own Gushungo Dairies. It is owned by the Mugabe family. As such (it) cannot be treated as his personal property,” the lawyer said, dismissing further reports that Mugabe owned properties outside Zimbabwe.
“Since this is wealth, who would ever ignore that? You journalists are incisive, you surely would have told us the names of the properties. You didn’t because they don’t exist. They will always be a fabrication,” he said.
On October 21 this year, Bona notified the Master’s Office by disclosing that her late father had US$10 million in a CBZ Bank nostro account and a number of immovable and movable properties.
According to Bona, Mugabe owned house number 129 Forbes Road in Waterfalls; villa number 65 in Gunhill, Harare; number 27 Quorn Avenue in Mt Pleasant; Lot GB Helensvale and Lot 1 of subdivision B of Sub G of Helensvale; Highfield Farm, Zvimba rural farming plot (about five acres), Zvimba rural home (one hectare), Zvimba orchard (about five acres) and 10 cars.
In terms of the estate, Grace is listed as the sole surviving spouse, while Bona, Robert, Bellarmine and Russel Goreraza are listed as Mugabe’s surviving children.