Grace ring fiasco: What $1.4 m can buy

Imagine what $1.4 million would do to help Zimbabwe’s struggling economy?
This is the amount of money Grace Mugabe used to buy a wedding ring on her  20th anniversary with President Robert Mugabe.
Despite the source of the money not being verified, Grace, as wife to a public figure and a member of the First family, is subject to public scrutiny on her spending especially at a time when the Mugabe government is faced with allegations of massive looting and abuse of state resources.

Read more about the diamond ring saga here

To make a comparison, we publish below what $1.4 million could do:

In his 2017 Budget presentation, Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa allocated the following amounts to various sectors and here we look at allocations that are up to $1.4 million


Capitalisation of NATPHARM–US$1 million

The National Pharmaceutical Company of Zimbabwe (Natpharm) is a state entity responsible for the procurement of drugs and other pharmaceuticals for public hospitals and clinics and with the shortage of drugs and other resources in hospitals, the parastatal is in dire need of recapitalisation and the amount Grace spent on a ring, was just enough to meet that need.


:Teacher capacity development–US$1 million
:Operational support to tertiary institutions–US$1.5 million
Either of these two sectors, teacher capacity development, which got $1m, or Operational support to tertiary institutions, could have benefitted, had Grace – as the ‘mother of the nation’decided to give the ring money to the struggling government her husband leads.


:Health Assistance–US$1 million
: Labour Administration–US$1.3 million
Social services is one of the critical sectors of the country, and its labour adminstration allocation of $1.3m in the 2017 budget could have been covered with some change, from the ring money. The money could also have been alternatively allocated to health assistance of the social services.


Rural Electrication–US$1 million
A $300k change – enough for a very good ring- would have remained!

  • Far from the budget items, $1.4 million, is just about a quarter of the $6 million CAPS holdings, the largest pharmaceutical company needs to recapitalise and it would have been helpful to the company’s cause.
  • With government workers’ salaries pegged at an average of $300 per month, $1.4 million is enough to pay about 4.660 civil servants.
  • With the monthly family basked pegged at about $571, $1.4m will afford monthly groceries for up to 2451 families
  •  $1.4 could have gone a long way in patching up (at least for now) the dangerous Mavingo highway. This could have saved lives.

Let’s share what you could have done with $1.4m to improve Zimbabwe.

Related Posts


  1. zvakaoma mufunge tinenge tichikuonai zvedu ugofunga nzara yaiveko gore rino hryt chero dai makatora mita kwakut vana idyai -handei tosangana pakuyambuka 2018

  2. Takudzwa Marangwanda

    Its a shame, while others are living most are surviving.

  3. zvakaoma samai venyika vaifanira kufunga .ndohumbavha hurikutaurwa vanhu vashaya bonus nekuda kweRingyayida kutengwa . makatadza hamayangu kamu 2018 ndopamuchaona kuti hamuna kungwara . bvumai tivhote is
    u kuno madayasipora .ZANU pf inoona moto

  4. Grace is the Marry Antonette of the day! Extravagant and a profligacy life that is all she wants in her life-time, tokubata 2018

  5. jezeebel haana tsitsi moyo wekubereka hapana ndofunga anongofunga vake vana ndovega vakazvarwa kwete povo

  6. There is no way Grace can justify spending $1.4 m on a ring in such a poor country. Their income is derived from poor people.

    Even if Grace says Mugabe saved the money and some came from farming, it doesnt wash because we all know that the dairy is making huge losses.

  7. The Romanian Revolution (Romanian: Revoluția Română) was a period of violent civil unrest in Romania in December 1989 and part of the Revolutions of 1989 that occurred in several countries.[1] The Romanian Revolution started in the city of Timișoara and soon spread throughout the country, ultimately culminating in the show trial and public televised execution of longtime Communist leader Nicolae Ceaușescu and his wife, and the end of 42 years of Communist rule in Romania. It was also the last removal of a Communist government in a Warsaw Pact country during the events of 1989, and the only one that violently overthrew a country’s government and executed its leader.

  8. And our mother claims to be leading by example! But I have a feeling that we deserve it – for how do we vote for this kind of leadership?

Comments are closed.