CONSTRUCTION at former President Robert Mugabe’s daughter, Bona Mugabe-Chikore’s sprawling property in the leafy suburb of Umwinsidale has resumed after temporarily stalling during the transition that removed Mugabe from power.
According to reports, the Chinese contractors had hurriedly vacated the hilltop property fearing that some sections of Mugabe’s pursuers would picket the site.
Mugabe resigned from power on November 21 last year following military intervention after 37 years as the President of Zimbabwe.
Days before his resignation, protesters had threatened to picket at his Blue Roof mansion and other properties to force him to leave power.
Bona’s property, sitting on large tracts of land sliced to make way for roads leading to the construction site and to form a picturesque landscape that could make the property one of the most magnificent in the area, is now under full-time construction.
Although NewsDay was denied entry after several attempts, the publication managed to gather evidence of construction at the property.
The construction has, however, unsettled many in the neighbourhood, who cannot move freely around the site.
NewsDay failed to establish the size and boundary of the property, but witnessed one motorist, who claimed to be a neighbour, being denied entry after the guards manning the property said the area had been cordoned from the rest of the neighbourhood.
“I was only allowed to pass after I objected to them dictating that we should find other ways to the area. We used to pass through the area, not that we are trespassing, but I just think it’s a way to hide from the public what is happening,” the motorist, who declined to be named, said.
“I stood my ground and told them we are not going to be told to find other means of accessing the neighbourhood and they must make peace with us moving around.”
Others in the area said they dared not get near the property or else it would land them in trouble.
Although it is still at the early stages of development, NewsDay could not independently verify the nature of the property under construction.
However, the Mugabes are known for their expensive tastes, especially former First Lady Grace Mugabe, who reportedly owns mansions outside the country, thereby, fuelling speculation the project might be a multi-million one.