Mugabe snubs Charambas funeral

Mugabe snubs Charambas funeral
Published: 19 May 2017 (305 Views)
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace neither attended the funeral of the wife of the president's long-serving press secretary George Charamba nor sent a public condolence message to the family, exposing severely frayed relations as Zanu-PF factional and succession battles intensify.

Idaishe Olivia Charamba died aged 45 on Sunday after battling liver and kidney problems. She was laid to rest at her rural home in Mutorashanga on Tuesday.

Charamba, who also serves as permanent secretary in the Information ministry, has worked for Mugabe for 30 years. The president was expected to either attend the burial or at least pay his condolences at Charamba's home in Harare.

Government officials believe the no-show could be attributed to the fallout between Grace and Charamba. Grace is leading the G40 faction, while Charamba is associated with the Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa-led faction.

Some of the most prominent government officials who attended the funeral include Mnangagwa, Zimbabwe Defence Forces commander General Constantino Chiwenga, Foreign Affairs minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi, Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Misheck Sibanda, Central Intelligence Organisation director-general Happyton Bonyongwe, Deputy Information minister Thokozile Mathuthu and Foreign Affairs secretary Ambassador Joey Bimha.

Mnangagwa spent the better part of Sunday evening (the day Idaishe died) at the Charambas' home in Alexandra Park, along with other ministers. Vice-President Phelekezela Mphoko also went to pay his condolences.

Zanu-PF political commissar Saviour Kasukuwere and Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo, who are linked to the G40 faction, reportedly made "cameo" appearances at the family home.

Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo apparently represented government - not Mugabe's family - at the funeral.

A fallout between Grace and Charamba was exposed last year at a Women's League rally when former Zanu-PF Women's League secretary for finance Sarah Mahoka, who used to be a Grace's close ally, denigrated Charamba when she challenged the president to state if he had authorised his spokesperson to grant ZiFM a radio interview.

In the interview, Charamba attacked the G40 faction whom he accused of being succesionists. He warned that they should start worrying about their careers, in a statement believed to have been directed at Moyo.

Charamba accused G40 of undermining Mugabe and pushing the succession narrative within the governing party.

"What they have to worry about are their own careers, not me," Charamba said.

An article Charamba wrote for the state-controlled Herald newspaper in 2011 explains his close relationship with Mugabe and how the two have worked together since 1988.

"… I have had the privilege of working with President Mugabe since 1988, more intensively since 1990 as head of his small Press Unit, then Deputy Principal Private Secretary before going back to the Press Department, this time as its director," wrote Charamba. "I grew in that seat until I doubled up as a Permanent Secretary and his spokesman, a duality that has since discomfited the Prime Minister and his party. All this means I have worked with the president for slightly over two decades, clearly his longest-serving press secretary to date, possibly ever."

Charamba had not yet responded to a message sent to him by the Zimbabwe Independent by the time of going to print.

- the independent


You May Like These Videos


There are no comments.

Latest stories

Tsvangirai bans MDC-T primaries

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 58 Views

Dark week for Democracy in Zimbabwe

by PDP | 27 July 2017 | 49 Views

NewsDay journalists arrested, assaulted by police

by Stephen Jakes | 27 July 2017 | 58 Views

Grace challenges Mugabe to name successor

by Stephen Jakes | 27 July 2017 | 102 Views

Bosso trail Bulawayo City at BF

by Staf reporter | 27 July 2017 | 51 Views

Entirely my fault, Cdes

by CZ | 27 July 2017 | 45 Views

Mpilo maternity fundraising gala in UK

by The Life Project | 27 July 2017 | 89 Views

Unity among Mugabe's opponents falter

by Bloomberg | 27 July 2017 | 121 Views

Mnangagwa faction wins Chief Justice Constitutional amendment

by Stephen Jakes | 27 July 2017 | 118 Views

Nkosana Moyo talks on his Zimbabwe vision

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 100 Views

Second university for Manicaland

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 123 Views

Cops letting panners into diamond fields

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 97 Views

Mugabe's govt takes over Joshua Nkomo memorial lectures

by Staff reporetr | 27 July 2017 | 81 Views

Dembare blame referees

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 125 Views

Undenge dismiss fresh attempts to elbow him out

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 72 Views

English Premiership clubs to tour Zimbabwe during off-season break

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 124 Views

Kasukuwere, war vets on collision course

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 128 Views

Court stops Sheriff from arresting Chombo

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 70 Views

Diamond looters plotted to assassinate Minister Chidhakwa

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 82 Views

Zimbabwe maintains family planning course

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 59 Views

Bosso to unleash Gift Lunga's son

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 88 Views

Police officer injured in demo against roadblocks

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 77 Views

'Killer' MDC-T activists denied bail

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 65 Views

Zimbabwe maize production up 286% from a low base

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 63 Views

Zimra to swoop on land barons

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 65 Views

Truck overturns, spills 34 000ltrs of sulphuric acid

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 85 Views

War vets accuse police, CIO

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 67 Views

Mutuma was home sick

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 68 Views

Armed robbery suspect acquitted of murder

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 40 Views

Gay activist sues police, Zanu-PF activist for $10,8 million

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 48 Views

KFC gets ready for new Bulawayo outlet opening

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 55 Views

MDC-T accuses Mnangagwa of flouting Bill procedures

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 41 Views

DStv quashes Zimbabwe exit rumours

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 93 Views

Gringo request to meet Zodwa Wabantu

by Staff reporter | 27 July 2017 | 135 Views