via Ex-PM savages Grace’s lavish bash – DailyNews Live 27 July 2015
HONDE VALLEY – First Lady Grace Mugabe’s lavish 50th birthday bash at the First Family’s huge mansion in Harare last night has come under severe attack from opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai — who urged the nation not to “waste time and money talking about her non-event” birthday.
Responding to the chairperson of the MDC Women’s Assembly Lynette Karenyi-Kore’s question regarding “the decency of investing hundreds of thousands in the birthday bash” — amid worsening poverty levels in the country, Tsvangirai said Grace was “irrelevant” and discussing her was “a waste of time”.
“Mai Kore musapa Grace zvaasingakwanisi. Musasimudzira Grace zvaasingafaniri nekuti uya as long as iye achidya achiguta haaneyi nezvimwe zvese izvi. So hatitauri nemunhu anongotarira kwaari chete. Tinotanga tatarira kuti urikuisa nyika nevanhu pamberi here. (Let’s not waste time talking about Grace. She is a selfish woman. We need to discuss serious people.)
Grace, a former typist in Mugabe’s office — who had her first child, Bona, with the nonagenarian while his late first wife, Sally, was bedridden with kidney problems — is known for her expensive penchant for glitz and glamour.
She has often been heavily criticised for going on expensive overseas shopping sprees. It was claimed in 2003 that she had spent an astonishing $120 000 during one such trip to the French capital Paris.
Hundreds of guests attended Grace’s extravagant birthday dinner and each had to cough up a whopping $2 000 for a seat.
However, the chairperson of the committee organising Grace’s bash, Rodney Dangarembizi, defended the event — arguing that it was meant to raise funds for charity.
Social and political analysts earlier this week told the Daily News on Sunday’s sister paper, the Daily News, that Grace’s penchant for the finer things in life was embarrassing and “a disgrace” — the latter a play on her name.
Academic Ibbo Mandaza blamed Mugabe for the birthday extravagance, saying it started with the nonagenarian spoiling himself courtesy of a lavish 91st birthday bash in Victoria Falls that was hosted by the 21st February Movement earlier this year.
Human rights activist Dewa Mavhinga described the lavish birthday bash as “an insult to the suffering millions in Zimbabwe who are wallowing in poverty”.
“It also shows just how out of touch with reality the ruling elite have become and this does not augur well for a bright future for the country,” Mavhinga said.