It all started in Gwanda (“ice cream” poisoning)
And it was also a Gwanda man who rescued him
By Paul Nyathi | President Emerson Mnangagwa has finally revealed where he was hiding during his short stint on exile when he fled from former President Robert Mugabe in November.
In an address to thousands of Zimbabweans resident in South at a business indaba in Pretoria on Thursday, Mnangagwa for the first time told how he walked over 30 kilometres into Mozambique fleeing from state security agents who were in hot pursuit of him as he fled the country.
Mnangagwa then revealed that when he crossed from Mozambique into South he phoned the Gwanda born South African billionaire businessman Justice Maphosa (as ZimEye revealed) who received him and accommodated him throughout his brief exile.
“After walking some 30 kilometres crossing the border into Mozambique. After I had been fired around 4 o’clock (on November 6), intelligence had made me aware of the next move intended to eliminate me,” Mnangagwa said.
“Fortunately, I found a [business] card in my wallet which bore the name of a colleague here, (Justice) Maphosa, whom I phoned and he picked me. I came here and I was well-looked after,” Mnangagwa said parading Maphosa to the crowd.
Maphosa has been Mnangagwa’s top funder as the President led the Lacoste ZANU PF faction in the days of the bitter ZANU PF internal fights that led to the fall of Mugabe.
Reliable sources in South Africa indicated to ZimEye.com that indeed Mnangagwa was during his exile time spotted at the luxurious Tsogo Sun Hotel in Pretoria which is part of Maphosa’s huge business empire in South Africa.
The businessman has been running several charity programmes with Mnangagwa’s biggest aide retired Defence Forces Commander Constantine Chiwenga’s wife.
Media reports have also hinted that Maphosa was awarded a hefty business tender to supply the Zimbabwe Defence Forces with fire arms.
Maphosa also bankrolls the annual million dollar Gwanda Gospel Music Extravaganza held in Gwanda every August.