Robert Mugabe fit as a fiddle, says wifeBy KITSEPILE NYATHI in Harare | Tuesday, June 12 2012 at 09:09
Zimbabwe’s First Lady Grace Mugabe says President Robert Mugabe is still ‘fit, lucid, energetic and sound.”
She made the claims in a rare interview with the state media where she also spoke about the 88 year-old leader’s business interests.
For the past two years, rumours have persisted that President Mugabe suffers from advanced prostate cancer.
Last year, he flew to Singapore more than eight times amid reports that he was seeking treatment.
Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor Dr Gideon Gono was quoted in a leaked 2008 United States diplomatic cable saying doctors had given President Mugabe five years to live
“That’s what they say (the President alleged ill-health), they say (President) Mugabe is a very old man and this and that, but he is very sound and lucid,” she told the state owned Sunday Mail.
“Very, very sound I’m telling you, and very energetic, too. Oh yes, he is a different person.
“He will not miss exercises, seven days a week. At that age, he is very lucky he inherited his mother’s genes.
“We think when she died she was over 100 years old and she was very sound.
“She was never sick at all and the President is not sick at all.”
Treatment in Singapore
Mrs Mugabe who is 41 years younger than the veteran ruler claimed she was the one who was receiving treatment in Singapore after an accident during a work-out in the gym.
“I injured my back in the gym….Do I look like a sick person. I am not sick, not for now,” she said. “But even if I were sick, I am a human being.
“We all get sick and afflicted. So really it’s nothing to talk about.”
The First Lady married President Mugabe in 1996 soon after the death of his first wife.
She has been maligned in Zimbabwe for her alleged extravagant life-style in a country where the majority of people live in poverty.
“I am a humble person, but I also like to dress well,” Mrs Mugabe said. “I am like my mother, she dresses well, so did my father.
“I think it’s an art that’s in-born. I love dressing up, but I also make my own clothes.
“I design my own clothes. They (critics) will say that because they can’t get at (President) Mugabe they have to find a soft spot to get at him.
“So they think Grace is a soft spot, but I don’t think they know the real Grace. I am not as soft as they think I am.”
Mrs Mugabe also revealed that the family had built what she claimed was the second largest dairy project in southern Africa.
“I am told there is a big one in South Africa in terms of points to milk each cow,” she said. “The South African one has 84 milking points while ours has 64 clusters.
“We have also decided to add value to our milk so that we really make a little bit of money for ourselves and, of course, the workers.
“So we are putting up a processing plant and it’s almost complete.”
The family also has about 2,000 beef cattle. President Mugabe is using some of the commercial farms he seized from white commercial farmers for redistribution to landless blacks.
His wife also denied reports that the family had interests in the construction industry where they allegedly linked up with South Koreans.
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