PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace have reportedly warned loud-mouthed and controversial businessman Wicknell Chivayo – who has a criminal reecord – to stop abusing his association with them following the pictures he posted having dinner with the First Lady in Dubai earlier this month, it has surfaced.
By Kudzai Kuwaza
Mugabe and his wife were said to have been seriously angered by pictures posted on social networking website, Facebook by Chivayo showing the businessman having dinner with Grace and her son Robert Jr in Dubai.
“Had dinner in Dubai yesterday with my mother (Grace) and my little brother (Robert Jr) … I love my parents … Team Bob for life, there is nothing you can do to me,” he childishly boasted on his Facebook page.
The post came after Chivayo, a convicted fraudster making money through dodgy Zimbabwe Power company multi-dollar deals, lashed out at Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo for joining many other Zimbabweans in suggesting that the Zimbabwe Football Association needs corporate sponsorship rather than individual benefactors. Moyo’s comments came after Chivayo had withdrawn sponsorship to the national team following the state-controlled weekly Sunday Mail’s report he had gone two months without paying national soccer team coach Kalisto Pasuwa.
“Following those photos posted on Facebook, the First Family recently dispatched senior state operators to tell him to shut up and stop abusing his association with them,” informed sources revealed. “They indicated that the President’s family was very unhappy with the pictures he had posted in the aftermath of the purported dinner he had with the First Lady. They also made it very clear that the issue was not up for discussion. It was the conveyance of a strong message from them that Chivayo must stop his antics forthwith.” Contacted for comment this week, Chivayo denied he had been warned against abusing his association with the First Family.
“I understand it is everyone’s dream to stand next to royalty. The dinner was a gesture to me from the First Lady for my support of football,” Chivayo said. “The issue of how people want to misinterpret the pictures out of context is subjective. That I was posting them was clearly testimony of how simply enthused I was. Honouring your leadership even in a foreign country is commendable and should be inspirational.”
This is not the first time Chivayo has posted pictures with members of the First Family.
In 2014, he posted pictures with Mugabe at State House alongside a comment which read: “Long live my hero, my role model, the most valuable gift from God to the people of Zimbabwe, the man of principles, a sincere and loving father, incorruptible revolutionary. I had a wonderful meeting with the Commander-in-Chief of the Defence Forces yesterday. For him and only him I had to wear a suit, for any other president I’ll wear shorts instead. ZimAsset was the main topic of the conversation.”