Robert Mugabe’s daughter hired Chinese builders to construct a new home for herself on state land earmarked for a school.
Bona Mugabe, 27, the former Zimbabwean leader’s eldest child, was planning to add to her family’s property empire with a hillside sprawling mansion on Umwinsidale Road on the outskirts of Harare.
Construction has already started there, but when the dictator was ousted from his throne, the contractors downed tools and removed their bulldozers and equipment.
But damage to the hillside has already been done with a huge slice of land cut out of the land.
Police are still guarding the area, which is littered with concrete foundations, scaffolding and pipes, and told the Sunday Telegraph the Chinese builders had left the site.
Neighbours told the paper Bona and her 40-year-old husband first turned up in June and the first piece of foundation was laid down in October.
But when Mugabe’s reign looked to be under threat, the work stopped and the cranes, diggers and personnel vanished. It would have been another addition to the family’s enormous empire, which will go untouched due to Mugabe’s resignation deal.
Bona’s mother Grace Mugabe has several properties dotted around the country and beyond worth more that a million dollars.
Rusty Markham, councillor for the opposition Movement for Democratic Change Party, told the Telegraph: “This was City of Harare land. Planning years ago was that a school would have been built on this site. It is a mystery how this couple landed up with this property.”
The paper informed a senior Zanu PF MP about the Mugabe’s clear plans to use land meant for the state to bolster their own assets and he claimed to be unaware of the situation.
He added: “Planning was that a school would be built on this site. It is a mystery how this couple ended up with it.”