Faizel Patel, Radio Islam News - 11-09-2019
The director for Human Rights Watch says Zimbabweans belief that former leader Robert Mugabe was the author of Zimbabwe’s problem has been sanitized.
Dewa Mavinga was speaking to Radio Islam on Wednesday about Mugabe’s legacy including details surrounding his burial.
Zimbabweans have been divided over how to mourn a former leader once hailed as a liberation hero but who later brutally repressed his opponents.
Mavinga says the perception of Mugabe changed after Emmerson Mnangagwa became president.
"After the coup, what happened under Mnangagwa, the new leader, particularly the serious human rights abuses that continued, all these appeared to have contributed to sanitizing Mugabe, so that in comparison, many began to say 'well Mugabe was much better, Mugabe was the better devil, Mugabe was more acceptable.”
Meanwhile, there is also uncertainty about where Mugabe will be buried.
His body was flown home from Singapore on Wednesday, five days after he died in a hospital.
On Thursday and Friday, Mugabe's body will lie in state at Rufaro Stadium in the capital so the public can pay their respects.
Mavinga says while the coup leaders insist Mugabe must be buried at the National Heroes Acre monument in Harare, his family is resting the government's plan.
“Family members are saying according to Mugabe’s own wishes, he should be buried at his rural home in Zvimba. So there is no agreement and in fact we understand that the actual burial has been postponed indefinitely because of those sharp differences.”
The official funeral will be held on Saturday at the 60,000-seat National Sports Stadium in Harare and foreign leaders are expected to attend.
Mugabe died on Friday at a Singapore hospital.
Listen to the interview with Dewa Mavinga