The Sunday Mail
President Mugabe and First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe are “quiet benefactors” who have given sustainable livelihoods to many individuals, a close relative has said. Ahead of Amai Mugabe’s 52nd birthday today, her niece Mrs Farai Chinyani told The Sunday Mail of how the First Lady once lived in one-roomed lodgings but rose above that humble start to not only become a national political leader, but also one of Zimbabwe’s foremost philanthropists.
Mrs Chinyani also gave insights into the First Family’s home life, including the President and First Lady’s strict diet and exercise consciousness, as well as Amai Mugabe’s romance with reggae music.
She said, “The First Lady helped us to attain an education and she treats us all the same . . . All the kids have gone to college because of Amai. “When some people become successful in life, they just focus on their own well-being. I actually think that the most important thing she has done for us is empowering us with education. We have been educated and now we can do things on our own.”
Mrs Chinyani, who lived with Amai Mugabe for years, said the First Lady loves being around family, but “means business when it’s time for seriousness”.
She went on, “The First Lady and President Mugabe raised me. I was born when my mum was very young and my father passed away when I was two-years-old. Therefore, I lived with Amai when I was about nine-years-old. She is such a wonderful person.
“Amai Mugabe is generous, very cultured; and you even see for yourself that she is also very smart. Amai is hardworking. We learnt that diligence from her. She is cultured in the sense that she always teaches us to be decent women; she takes care of her husband all the time. She taught us that even though we are educated, we should be good wives. She cooks for her husband all the time.”
Mrs Chinyani said: “I think Amai got into politics when she was very young and as you can see, she has matured over time. The First Lady is a very tough person and can withstand political pressure. Politics is not an easy game, but she can stand the heat. I think she is a courageous person. That I don’t doubt.”