Zimbabwe

Mugabe daughter's Japan visit a 'courtesy call'

2015-03-17 17:51

Harare - President Robert Mugabe's daughter Bona was paying a courtesy call on Japanese officials when she was pictured with her father during an official trip to Japan, Zimbabwe's information minister Jonathan Moyo said on Tuesday.

"She's part of the first family. It was a courtesy call," Moyo said on his Twitter page.

"Chelsea Clinton used to join [former US president] Bill [Clinton] in similar cases with no eyebrows raised," he added.

News that Bona Mugabe, 24, sat with her 91-year-old father and his foreign minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi during discussions with officials in Tokyo sparked a fears in Zimbabwe that the president may be trying to build a dynasty to maintain a hold on power after he retires or dies.

The story was front page news on Tuesday in both the main private titles, Newsday and the Daily News.

Bona has a Masters degree in banking and finance, but has played no part in politics until now. Her mother Grace was in December elected to head the ruling party's women's league.

Pressed to answer more questions on the issue, Moyo said: "Leave me alone. It's none of your business or mine for that matter."

The minister, who is behind Zimbabwe's tough 2002 press laws, admitted on Monday that his Facebook and Twitter pages had been flooded with insults since he joined the social networking sites barely a month ago. He said he was "cool with that".

Read more on:    robert mugabe  |  bona mugabe  |  grace mugabe  |  jonathan moyo  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa

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