Grace’s PhD: Witness throws Mararike under the bus

Source: Grace’s PhD: Witness throws Mararike under the bus – NewsDay Zimbabwe


A STATE witness in the trial of former University of Zimbabwe (UZ) vice-chancellor Levi Nyagura who is accused of single-handedly awarding a PhD to former First Lady Grace Mugabe yesterday told the court that Claude Mararike, who supervised the awarding of the degree, was not qualified to do so since he was only a holder of a master’s degree.

Wilbert Sadomba, who said he was chairperson of the faculty of sociology, told court that he was not consulted and did not see Grace’s registration in the department.

Sadomba said there were minutes on how Grace got her PhD, but had no knowledge if the meeting ever took place.

He said Nyagura as the vice-chancellor had the sole responsibility of approving the awarding of degrees.

Sadomba said Justine Tandire, who was the research assistant, was also not qualified to be the assistant since he was appointed by a person who was not qualified.

But under cross-examination, Sadomba admitted that there were progress reports and research material to prove Grace’s awarding of the degree.

Sadomba also revealed that he was not a member of the sociology department at the time that Grace was a student at the university.

Last week, another witness, Julius Musevenzi, told the court that there were documents which showed that Nyagura was working with other UZ staff who were involved in admitting Grace as a PhD student.

Nyagura’s lawyer Tawanda Zhuwarara then asked the witness if he was admitting that the ex-UZ boss did not single-handedly award the degree to Grace, to which he said Nyagura was working with others.

Musevenzi also revealed that Mararike was responsible for ensuring that Grace complied with university regulations.

Chief magistrate Munamato Mutevedzi postponed the matter to tomorrow for trial continuation.

Allegations are that sometime in 2011, Nyagura single-handedly accepted and approved Grace’s application to study for a PhD in sociology without the knowledge and recommendations of the departmental board and faculty of higher degrees committee in violation of UZ quality assurance, guidelines and benchmarks.

It is alleged that during the same period, Nyagura covertly appointed Mararike and a Chaneta to supervise Grace’s thesis without the knowledge and approval of the departmental board of sociology.

Nyagura allegedly led supervisors and examiners to Grace’s Mazowe Estate where the defence of oral examination was purportedly done.

Ideally, the oral examination was supposed to be done on campus.

He allegedly abused his position by showing favour to Grace, who did not meet minimum requirements to study for the degree.

It is alleged Nyagura’s actions compromised the standards of the country’s education system.


  • comment-avatar
    Ndonga 9 months ago

    Of course, corruption was blatant in awarding Grace Mugabe that quickie and secretive PhD.
    How can a Doctoral candidate be supervised by the holder of only a Master’s degree?
    How can the Vice Chancellor of any University in this wide world get involved in organising and awarding of a PhD without the head of the relevant head of the Department involved not told what is happening?
    And then think of the shame of that same Vice Chancellor traveling with two assistants all the way to Grace’ stolen estate in Mazowe to allow PhD candidate Lady Grace to be examined orally in defense of her research findings? Just think of what happened there…Yes Lady Grace, no Lady Grace and just take your time Lady Grace as we have all day Lady Grace.
    But more likely the meeting never even took place as her PhD award was already the highlight of the print Graduation Programme.
    The whole situation was, and still is, a sad joke in the academic world and has damaged severely the standing and reputation of the University of Zimbabwe.
    Grace’s PhD is now worthless and sadly so are all the other higher degrees now being awarded by the University of Zimbabwe.
    From Typist Grace to Lady Grace and then Doctor Grace…and finally back again to where it all began …Dis Grace.

  • comment-avatar
    Dr Ace Mukadota PhD 9 months ago

    Remember that way back in the 1980/90’s Zimbank had a raffle and who do you think won first prize comrades ?
    None other than Comrade Robert Matabili Mugabe PhD – Zimbank said there had been no fishy or monkey business in shuffling the cards to favour the former dictator.
    Mushayakarara was the CEO of Zimbbnk at the time and he was of course a Mugabe acolyte and was forever grateful to Mugabe for his job at Zimbank.
    ZANUPF know how to rig things – see how the ZW dollar is rigged on a daily basis.

  • comment-avatar
    Dr Ace Mukadota PhD 9 months ago

    Comrade Grace Marujata Mugabe PhD ?
    How does one go from form 2 pass to PhD – only in ZW at the Univ of ZW