Mnangagwa calls on Zimbabweans to mourn Mugabe

The body of former president Robert Mugabe arrives to lie in state inside his official residence in the capital Harare Zimbabwe Wednesday Sept. 11 2019

The Mugabe family has taken the Zimbabwean government to task over arrangements to bury the former President Robert Mugabe.

The Government has released the list of VVIPs who will be attending the funeral of the late Robert Mugabe.

After his body arrived home, though, Mugabe's final burial place became a point of dispute between his family and government.

"One of the wishes that Mugabe indicated was that his wife, Dr Grace Mugabe, must never leave the casket bearing his remains for the duration of the funeral proceedings while in Zimbabwe up until his mortal remains have been interred".

President Emmerson Mnangagwa had declared Mr Mugabe a national hero after his death, indicating he should be buried at the national monument.

In a deeply superstitious country, the collapse of a pole marquee being put up at Mugabe's residence in Borrowdale, known as Blue Roof, as his body was being taken to One Commando for a brief church service was taken as a sign of his unhappiness. He was later followed into the house by army officials and Mugabe family members.

Widow Grace Mugabe center wears a black veil as she follows the coffin of former president Robert Mugabe as it arrives to lie in state inside his official residence in the capital Harare Zimbabwe Wednesday Sept. 11 2019

"To that end, we confirm that honourable Walter Chidakwa may communicate our position with relevant authorities to ensure that we develop a programme that conforms to the wishes of the lat Mugabe". A delegation including a vice president headed flew to Singapore to bring him home.

The government had planned for a state funeral on Saturday and then burial on Sunday.

But the family said traditional chiefs in his homestead in the Zvimba region should decide where he should be buried.

The family on Thursday issued a statement saying it was concerned about the manner in which the government was preparing the programme for Mugabe's funeral "without consulting his immediate family".

A family statement demanded that Grace, who was once a rival to Mnangagwa for the presidency, should be front and centre during the funeral.

His body is being prepared to lie in state at a football stadium in Zimbabwe's capital, Harare.

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