Fresh details on former first lady, Grace Mugabe’s PhD saga emerged in court during the continuation of former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Zimbabwe, Professor Levi Nyagura.
Grace Mugabe’s PhD sent tongues wagging with some saying she had not earned it, something that affected the reputation of the University of Zimbabwe, resulting in Nyagura being suspended.
Appearing before the courts as a witness, Surgent Chevo, who was the registrar at the UZ during that period, told the court that there were no irregularities in all processes up until Mugabe graduated with a PhD.
Responding to questions during a cross-examination session by Nyagura’s lawyer, Advocate Tawanda Zhuwarara, Chevo said the examination panel did an oral examination on Grace Mugabe at her children’s home and she passed. He claimed:
As she was being asked questions by the examination panel during the oral examination at first she was shivering, but later calmed down and answered them satisfactorily.
After the oral examination the examination panel deliberated on Mugabe’s performance and all the members agreed unanimously that she had performed satisfactorily and that she be awarded a PhD degree.
He also exonerated Nyagura of the allegations that he gave him instructions that showed favour to Mugabe.
The second witness, senior lecturer Julius Musevenzi, recently told the court that there were documents showing that other university staff members took part in admitting Mrs Mugabe as a student.
It was also revealed through Advocate Zhuwarara’s cross-examination that there were university documents showing that Mrs Mugabe was conducting research and that progress reports were produced by Prof Mararike.
This comes after Dr Watch Ruparanganda, a senior official in the Department of Sociology at the UZ and also a witness in Nyagura’s trial told a Harare court that as a chair of the Department Grace was allegedly in, he should have been informed of Grace’s enrolment for a PhD.
Ruparanganda insinuated that the former first lady never enrolled for a PhD degree at the institution.