Chiwenga gives estranged wife until December 6 to vacate Borrowdale home, leave children behindVice President Constantino Chiwenga has given his wife, Mary, until Friday, December 6, to leave their matrimonial home in Borrowdale, ZimLive understands.
The retired army general furiously cut ties with his wife in July after a hospital bedside row in South Africa as he battled a mystery illness.Mary, a former model and ex-wife of footballer Shingi Kawondera, was forced to return home as Chiwenga was flown to China where he received lengthy treatment before returning home on November 23.
Chiwenga has not been home to see Mary or their children after moving into their other property in Chisipite, from where he has been plotting his divorce.Sources say a day after returning home, on November 24, the vice president sent an emissary to serve Mary with “gupuro” – a traditional Shona divorce token, typically a coin.The couple were customarily married in 2011. The marriage is recognised under Zimbabwean law but carries complexities which notoriously bring grief to widows. Mary reportedly drew Chiwenga’s ire when she asked for a Marriage Act (Chapter 5:11) union as the 63-year-old battled for his life in a Pretoria hospital.
Chiwenga, who suspects that he was poisoned, reportedly told aides he feared his wife may have had a hand in his illness and accused her of infidelity. Shortly after returning home, Chiwenga called in Harare lawyer Wilson Manase to finalise his separation.
Manase, while confirming Chiwenga was his client, declined to comment. Court officials said the lawyer’s first move had been to obtain a gag order from a judge to officially conceal the file relating to Chiwenga’s divorce.
A letter was then delivered to the 36-year-old Mary directing her to vacate the property and leave behind their two children together – a boy and a girl aged eight and seven. The couple had been living with two other children, a boy and a girl, from Mary’s previous marriage.
A source close to the developments said Mary had also called her lawyers to fight the intended eviction, which follows a familiar script. Chiwenga divorced his first wife, Jocelyn, in 2010 to clear the path for his marriage to Mary.
Jocelyn was evicted from the matrimonial home and also had soldiers sent by Chiwenga – then the commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces – to kick her out of their farm in Shamva.
Mary, currently battling poor health herself, was not answering calls on Thursday and had not responded to messages left on her mobile phone.
George Charamba, the presidential spokesman, said: “I don’t get into people’s private relationships or homes. Sorry, I can’t help.”