PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe will tomorrow conduct a double burial for the late Vice-President Simon Muzenda’s widow, Maud, and Zanu PF politburo member George Rutanhire at the National Heroes’ Acre.
BY VANESSA GONYE
This will be the second time for two heroes to be buried on a single day after the burial of national heroines Victoria Chitepo and Vivian Mwashita in April last year.
Rutanhire and Muzenda died on Saturday and Tuesday, respectively.
On Wednesday, Mugabe showered praises on Muzenda, whom he cited as the epitome of African motherhood.
“Gogo Muzenda stands tall as a symbol of the triumph of motherly femininity over adversities imposed on the African family unit by demands of our struggle against settler colonialism,” he said.
“Betrothed to a fierce nationalist and freedom fighter in the mould of our late Vice-President, Gogo Muzenda was for a long time fated to raise the Muzenda family without support from her husband.”
Mugabe bemoaned the multiple deaths that have robbed the country of its gallant daughters and sons within a short period.
“Ambuya Muzenda’s death comes a week after we laid to rest another heroine, Cde Shuvai Mahofa, and just a few days after the sad departure of Cde George Rutanhire,” he said.
In a condolence message, Zanu PF spokesperson Simon Khaya Moyo said the party was content with her heroine status, which she toiled for.
“Zanu PF is elated that President R G Mugabe and the party’s politburo have accorded the late Gogo Mai Maud Muzenda national heroine status. She earned it and deserved it through her contribution to the liberation of Zimbabwe in many respects. You reap what you sow through your deeds on earth. Those who sow the wind harvest the whirlwind,” he said.
“Gogo Muzenda, like her late husband Mzee, and many struggle stalwarts, nurtured the freedom seed, and harvested independence and sovereignity.
“You played your part, Gogo, with remarkable tenacity and the courage of a lioness guarding its cubs. Your good deeds live forever.”
Son of the late Muzenda, Tongai, said widespread praise and honour for his mother was a result of her character, and like her husband, she had a lot of affection for everyone and not just her children and the immediate family.
“What was really touching about Mai is her love, which was thoroughly different. We would like to thank President Mugabe and the politburo for according national heroine status to our mother, the family really appreciates what the government has done.”