CONTROVERSIAL FORMER Zimbabwe First Lady Grace Mugabe pounced on three farms in Mazowe in the company of Mbare thugs, her daughter Bona and son-in-law Simba Chikore and caused havoc, threatening to shoot workers while also shouting that President Emmerson Mnangagwa was running the country like a tuck-shop and he won’t rule for too long.
While indicating that Kasukuwere will soon return from exile, the former First Lady also told farmers in Mazowe that in three years’ time, both the farmers and the current government of President Mnangagwa will be “history very soon”, as she went about trying to evict farmers who have offer letters which they got when her husband was still in power.
“When we showed her the offer letters we got in 2006 when her husband was still in power, she shouted obscenities at the current President and said she wanted nothing to do with his government and just wanted the farm.
The farms in question are under the ownership of Sahungwe Hungwe, Adonia Makombe and former Dynamos executive member Nyika Chifamba, all of whom got their offer letters from former Minister Didymus Mutasa in 2006.
“She invaded my farm and wants to take it over but I am the one with offer letter. She came with her security team and Simba Chikore and locked the gate and threatened to shoot my gate keepers,” Hungwe told Zimbabwe Voice on Monday.
“She hired bouncers from Mbare and Gushungo Diary security guards who came and tormented our farm employees. What happened first is that Simba Chikore came alone on Saturday morning and threatened us out. When we showed him offer letters, he calmed down but proceeded to call Grace Mugabe who came in less than an hour in the company of Bona.”
Bona, the only daughter of Grace and the late former President Robert Mugabe, is married to Simba.
Hungwe said Grace has previously shown interest in the farms even when her husband was still in power, but Mugabe specifically told Didymus Mutasa not to give in on Grace’s demands to out-muscle the indigenous farmers who got the offer letters in 2006.
“She came with her daughter in tow, and caused pandemonium. She said lots and attacking His Excellency (President Mnangagwa), yet the farms were given to us by Mugabe’s administration. Akati majaira ku runner nyika se tuckshop (Mnangagwa is running Zimbabwe like his tuckshop). I will call my son right now, and in three years’ time you will all have left this farm,” Grace is quoted as having said.
By “son”, she meant Saviour Kasukuwere, a former Zanu-PF politcal commissar who is now in self-imposed exile following the removal of power of Mugabe.
“She tried calling Kasukuwere, but the phone would not get through. She made threats that in three years’ time we will all be history.
“We got the offer letter in 2006, when her husband was the President,” Hungwe narrated his ordeal. “We did not fight or insult them back; we need to prepare for farming on our farm, but Grace continues disrupting our activities and she wants to own and control all farms in Mazowe.”
The offer letters, which Zimbabwe Voice is in possession of, was issued on 3 July 2006 by Didymus Mutasa, who then was Minister of State for National Security, Lands, Land Reform and Resettlement in President Robert Mugabe’s office.
“Where is Grace Mugabe getting those powers from? She has been allowed free reign and has been bullying the whole of Mazowe even when she has no offer letters for some of the land she claims is hers. We have the offer letter and she doesn’t have papers.
“We have been there since 2006 but she has been eyeing this farm. She called Borrowdale police and when I showed them farm offer letters. They went back vakatoti hatidi kubatiswa madhaka. They locked us out; they removed our farm security and replaced with 28 guards from Gushungo Diary.
“She was clearly spoiling for a physical fight but we respected her; hatina kudzorera (we did not fight back despite the provocation) even though she clearly wanted to cause a scene,” Hungwe said.
Grace Mugabe is also said to have gone to a gold mining claim in Mazowe and told a consortium of war veterans mining there that in three years, they will kneel down to her.
Sources told Zimbabwe Voice that after Grace failed to nudge Didymus Mutasa into pushing the three farmers out, she somehow managed to seize the farms in 2011 under controversial circumstances.
Hungwe says the three – him, Makombe and Chifamba – then approached the High Court in 2018 to settle the ownership issue once and for all. According to the High Court ruling, which cited as respondents Grace Mugabe, her late husband, police commissioner Godwin Matanga and the Zimbabwe Republic Police.
Part of the crowds gathered around Simba Chikore as Grace Mugabe threatened to evict farmers
The High Court ruling, under case number HC 5860/18, ordered Grace and her proxies to vacate the property and not to interfere with activities at the 104 hectares farms.
“Whereupon, after reading all documents… it is ordered that… eviction of all persons claiming possession of subdivision 1, 2, 3 of Lot A of Teviotdale Farm, Mazowe District, Mashonaland Central province,” reads part of the ruling delivered in February this year.
Sources say Grace Mugabe also tried to reach out to President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s office for help with evicting the three farmers, but has met no assistance. The police also refused to help when Simba Chikore tried to enlist them to assist with the eviction, as they said the High Court ruling was clear who owned the farm.