Elizabeth Macheka Tsvangirai, the widow of the late founding leader of the opposition MDC-T party, Morgan Tsvangirai, has barred some of the children and relatives of the former prime minister from visiting the Highlands mansion. Elizabeth confirmed this development to Voice of America (VOA) although she said that some of Tsvangirai’s children were welcome as they have treated her with dignity and respect.
This comes after reports that she was ill-treated and alienated during her husband’s last days and at his funeral and burial last week. The Tsvangirai family did not acknowledge Elizabeth at the funeral although it recognised the family of Tsvangirai’s late first wife Susan Mhundwa Tsvangirai. Elizabeth was allegedly left out of the burial proceedings and was told to leave Tsvangirai’s rural home in Buhera soon after her late husband had been buried. She did not participate in any cultural rites.
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At a rally to celebrate Morgan Tsvangirai’s life the day before he was buried, his son Edwin did not introduce Elizabeth when he introduced the rest of the Tsvangirai family while Tsvangirai’s mother was eavesdropped by state media saying that she would commit suicide if Elizabeth showed up at the burial.
The animosity between Elizabeth and the Tsvangirai family is reported to have been caused by the family’s plan to disown her and to grab all of Tsvangirai’s estate before and after his death. Elizabeth’s lawyer, Harrison Nkomo, emphasised that her rights need to be respected by the Tsvangirai family as the two had been married up until Morgan’s death.
Manase Tsvangirai, the spokesperson for the Tsvangirai family refused to comment on the matter.