Zimbabwe: Grace Mugabe′s farm invaded by gold diggers | News | DW | 30.03.2018
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Zimbabwe: Grace Mugabe's farm invaded by gold diggers

Gold panners shouted obscenities at the former first lady when she tried to confront them as they mined for the precious metal. Unsuccessful in her attempt to evict them, Mugabe has filed a police complaint.

Zimbabwe's former first lady Grace Mugabe complained to police that illegal gold miners had invaded her farm to mine for the precious metal.

Zimbabwean newspaper Newsday reported that its reporters saw hundreds of miners busy digging for gold at the Mazowe farm, from where Mugabe had forcibly evicted villagers in 2015 when she was still the first lady.

The gold diggers uprooted lemon trees, destroyed irrigation equipment and disrupted activities at Mugabe's orphanage, Newsday said.

Read more: Zimbabwe court orders payment to farmers evicted by Grace Mugabe

Grace Mugabe, whose husband Robert Mugabe was forced out of power by a military coup last year, told Newsday that the invasion was "politically motivated."

"Does it mean that if President (Emmerson) Mnangagwa is removed tomorrow, he will be disposed of his investments," the paper quoted her as saying. "Is this how he wants to be treated with his investments?"

Miners shout obscenities

Mugabe told police she was "shocked" to find a group of about 400 men at her farm digging for gold and loading gold ore onto trucks.

When she confronted them, the miners began shouting obscenities at her.

"You no longer have any power to remove us. This is the new dispensation, we do what we want," Newsday reported one of the panners as saying.

The fortunes of Grace Mugabe, who harbored ambitions of succeeding her husband as Zimbabwe's president, have changed drastically since her husband's forced resignation. 

She is being investigated for ivory smuggling. The former first lady — known for her temper and love for luxury goods — is suspected of smuggling millions of dollars worth of ivory from the country' stockpiles under the pretext of giving diplomatic gifts.

Read moreOpinion: The Mugabe era is over, the old regime is not

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