HARARE: CONTROVERSIAL Zimbabwe first Lady Grace Mugabe, who has been on a spending spree on properties as she builds a vast empire around prime real estate in Mazowe, Borrowdale in Harare and Sandton in Johannesburg, South Africa, a few weeks ago splurged almost R6 million (about US$444 000) in cash on a brand new Rolls-Royce Ghost model, the Zimbabwe Independent reported.
This comes after her son Russell Goreraza and his business partner Valentine Garacho, linked to the Mujuru family, imported seven top-of-the-range vehicles worth about US$2,5 million after brokering a controversial mining deal between government and a Kazakhstan company, Todal Mining, which owns platinum concessions between Shurugwi and Zvishavane.
The cars include two Rolls-Royce, two Range Rovers, two Mercedes-Benz S-Class and an Aston Martin.
Highly-networked sources told the Independent this week that Grace bought a black Rolls-Royce, with a classy white interior early this month from Rolls-Royce Motor Cars in Sandton, Johannesburg, located on Laico Isle, 126 Rivonia Road. The car is parked at the basement of the car dealership just next to Radisson Blu Hotel.
“Grace sent someone to pay R5,8 million in cash for the car; a Rolls-Royce 2017 Ghost model. The car is currently parked in the basement of Rolls-Royce Motor Cars,” a source said.
“The other two Rolls-Royce that were bought by her son and his friend were also paid for in cash at the same garage before they were ferried to Zimbabwe without paying duty.”
Informed sources said Grace wants her luxurious car, which has a long wheelbase, to be registered in South Africa following a furore over Goreraza and Garacho’s luxury Rolls-Royce cars.
The sources said the car could only be brought into Zimbabwe using a temporary import permit.
The Rolls-Royce Ghost series, according to the South African dealership’s website, has a top speed of 250km/h. It is described as a car for those who desire sybaritic luxury and a spirited driving experience in the ultra-pricey motorcar.
Contacted for comment on her mobile phone, the First Lady’s spokesperson Olga Bungu requested for questions through text messages. Queries texted to her were, however, not responded to at the time of going to press.
Grace has been splurging millions of dollars despite the fact that her business empire under the Gushungo Holdings’ Alpha and Omega Dairies banner, is in the doldrums, incurring perennial losses since 2013. indp