'I could be dead by now,' says Grace Mugabe

'I could be dead by now,' says Grace Mugabe
Published: 27 July 2015 (627 Views)
First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe has said she could have been dead by now from various ailments that afflicted her in the 50 years she has been on earth if it was not for her inner strength and the love and support of her husband President Mugabe.

Speaking at a dinner gala to celebrate her 50th birthday anniversary and to fund-raise for charity, Amai Mugabe said God kept her for a purpose, especially her philantrophic work helping mainly less privileged children.

She chronciled to guests at the function held at the First Family's home in Borrowdale, Harare on Saturday evening, which spilled into the early hours of yesterday, how she suffered several medical operations since 1986.

"I am, therefore, most grateful to you all for accepting the invitation to come here to celebrate with me and my family the precious gift of life which God has given me over these past 50 years," said Amai Mugabe.

"They have been 50 years full of illnesses for me. The other day when I returned from Singapore after I had been hospitalised, I had undergone surgery there, and I was trying to narrate to people my medical history.

"I am a very strong person. I don;t think if I wasn't that strong I would be here today. When we were coming over to this marquee here I was saying to my husband 'thank you very much for being there for me, I have been very sick and you have been always on my side' and I went on to say 'if it wasn't for you, for that support morally and financially I would be dead by now'. I went on to say to him that 'I don't think if I were married to somebody else I would be alive today because I have gone through a lot'."

Amai Mugabe said it all started in 1986 when she had her tonsils taken out and 10 years later in 1996 she was under the knife again when her gall bladder was removed because she had developed gall stones.

"And then 10 years after, in 2006, I contracted pneumonia and the doctors started treating me for malaria and then they realised that no it wasn't malaria, it was pneumonia and the treatment came quite late," she said.

"I almost lost my life there, but God wanted me to live for a reason, I suppose for the children that I have adopted. By the way, the children are now 90 of them. The 90th one came only two days ago from Masvingo."

Amai Mugabe said only last year, she went under the knife again to have her appendix removed.

"So, you can imagine, I was talking with people in hospital that you know the doctors, they are giving me anesthesia and then they view my body," she said. "I have gone under body viewing many times by the doctors inside out.

"But I thank God because I am a very strong person. I do not think a person would have gone through so many operations would be as strong as I am, but I thank God for that."

Amai Mugabe said in celebrating her life, she keeps thinking about those who are crying out for help and those who yearn for a better life.

She said the theme of the celebrations: "Building Smart Partnership Through Philanthropic Excellency" simply meant trust was built through giving a helping hand to those who need it.

"Giving to others the little excess things in our lives that we do not really need, which will make a real difference," she said.

"Giving is a virtue and I usually say giving is not a privilege of the rich, but a privilege of the sincere.

"Giving is a virtue which we must all try to embrace and allow it to become, for all Zimbabweans, part of our culture of giving to the less privileged members of our society."

Amai Mugabe praised President Mugabe for being a good husband and being always by her side in happiness and in sickness.

"It is my cause for celebrating the many wonderful years I have spent in the company of my good husband who is my mentor, a pillar of faith in almost everything that I have done, including the many challenging programmes and projects that I have undertaken," she said.

"I always refer to him as a moving dictionary, I am sure you all agree with me. Ask him to define any word, he will say it exactly as it is defined in the dictionary. That is how intelligent this man is. My husband is always there for me in happiness and in sickness. I love him very much and I say to him thank you."

Amai Mugabe thanked her children, both biological and adopted, for being good to her.

She chronicled her history, saying it was important for people to shape their future through hard work.

Amai Mugabe was born in South Africa after her parents migrated in search of greener pastures, but they returned to Zimbabwe where he she grew up in the rural areas.

"I grew up in a rural background, typical African rural environment," she said. "I grew up a very disciplined girl. I could stand my ground among my peers. I could climb trees, milk cows, fetch firewood and carry a bucket of water on my head."

Amai Mugabe called for equality between boys and girls, saying it was good that the new Constitution recognised gender equality.

She said girls should be empowered through education and praised President Mugabe for education policies which encouraged people to go to school.

"I realised early in my life as I grew up the importance of education and the difference it makes to one's life," she said.

"Education is the only chance that the girl child has to rise above the cultural customary practices that continue to cast women as inferior to their male counterparts."

Amai Mugabe said she was in charity work because of her desire to promote equality and help the disadvantaged.

She said the charities she founded and those she is patron of symbolised the helping hand which is extending. She urged those who cannot form such charitable institutions to support them both in cash and kind.


- the herald

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