At least 11 Heads of State and eight former presidents from various African countries had by yesterday confirmed their attendance at former President Robert Mugabe’s State funeral service slated for tomorrow at the National Sports Stadium.
The former President, who was 95, died in Singapore after suffering ill-health for some time.
Deputy Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet in charge of Presidential Communications, Mr George Charamba, confirmed the list of Heads of State and other dignitaries that will attend the ceremony in a statement yesterday.
The 11 are Equatorial Guinea’s Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo,
DRC’s Felix Tshisekedi, Ghana’s Nana Akufo-Addo, Malawi’s Arthur Peter Mutharika, Angola’s Joao Laurenco, Saharawi’s Brahim Ghali, South Africa’s Cyril Ramaphosa, Mozambique’s Felipe Nyusi, Zambia’s Edgar Lungu, Namibia’s Hage Geingob and Kenya’s Uhuru Kenyatta.
Most of the leaders are expected in the country tomorrow, except for Presidents Geingob and Ghali.
Former presidents that have confirmed attendance are Zambia’s Kenneth Kaunda and Rupiah Banda, Mozambique’s Joaquim Chissano, South Africa’s Thabo Mbeki and Jacob Zuma, Namibia’s Sam Nujoma and Hifikepunye Pohamba and Botswana’s Festus Mogae.
Other dignitaries that have confirmed their attendance include Ethiopia’s Vice Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnen, Botswana’s Vice President Slumber Tsogwane and Cuba’s Vice President of the State Council of Ministers, Ines Maria Chapman Waugh.
The other dignitaries are Nicaragua Foreign Affairs Minister Denis Moncada, Iran’s Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for African Affairs, Ambassador Mehdi Agha Jafari, Special Envoy-Vice Chairperson of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference Gu Shengzu, Venezuela’s ambassador designate Omar Berroteren Paredes, Sadc’s Executive Secretary Dr Stergomena Tax, African Union’s Dr Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, the chief executive officer of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development and former Commonwealth Secretary General Mr Emeka Anyaoku.
Mr Charamba advised the media to be wary of false information on the burial of the former President circulating on social media.
“While consultations between Government and the Mugabe family on the burial arrangements continue, the media are advised to be particularly wary of false material circulating in the social media on the same and as far as possible to rely on authentic communication from Government, its designated officials and from authorised spokesperson(s) of the Mugabe family,” Mr Charamba said.
This came as some local media yesterday printed a false list of the Heads of States whom they said had confirmed attendance.
Cde Mugabe has been hailed worldwide for his role in the liberation of Zimbabwe and the continent at large.