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The untold story Robert Mugabe’s first wife whose death in 1992 changed Zimbabwe forever

On September 6, Robert Gabriel Mugabe passed away at the age of 95 subsequent to being expelled from power by his very own party men. On November 19, 2017, ZANU-PF expelled Mugabe as gathering pioneer, supplanting him with Mnangagwa and issuing a due date on November 20 for Mugabe to leave the administration or face reprimand.

Mugabe, extreme as nails as usual, was prepared to ride the tempest till a joint session of parliament met in front of his reprimand and sent his renunciation letter on November 21, 2017.

Being progressed in age, Mugabe had been in and out of medical clinics in South Africa and Singapore, in the long run passing on an emergency clinic bed in Singapore.

Robert with Sally in happier times. Photo credit: peacefmonline.com

As expected of a man who riled the British by redistributing land and farms appropriated by white owners back to black locals in the year 2000 onwards, Mugabe is vilely portrayed in the western media.

He could have also handed over the reins of government given his advanced age, and better managed the economy, as well as, build more critical infrastructure, nevertheless, the man who spoke eloquently and dressed sharply, as well as, abstained from liquor, coffee and largely vegetarian, is praised for increased school enrollment and expanded health care for citizens.

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But how did it all begin for Robert Gabriel Mugabe – career, love and politics wise?

mugabe's first wife
Sally Mugabe via faceofmalawi.com

Mugabe hailed from Kutama village and set out to be a teacher. In 1958, he went to work in Ghana then the Gold Coast at the Takoradi Teacher Training College where he taught and initiated a love union with Sally Francesca Hayfron.

She was then also teaching at the school, having attained her teaching certificate from the St Mary’s Trainer Coaching Faculty in Takoradi. The pair shared a fondness for Kwame Nkrumah’s speeches, having led Ghana to independence in 1957.

Sarah would follow Mugabe to Southern Rhodesia (as Zimbabwe was then known) where the pair married in April 1961 in Salisbury. Two years after their marriage, the pair birthed Nhamodzenyika (Shona for The Troubles of my Country) but their joy was short-lived when he died of a cerebral malaria attack in Ghana aged 3.

Sarah, also called Sally, was born on June 6, 1931. She was a product of Achimota Secondary School, emerging the first wife of Robert Mugabe and the First Lady of Zimbabwe from 1987 until her death in 1992 aged 60. She was popularly known as Amai (Mother) in Zimbabwe.

Sarah ‘Sally’ Mugabe via dailymail.co.uk

Although Sarah Francesca (Hayfron) Mugabe was a trained teacher, she was also a political activist and campaigner, putting her activism to deadly effect against the white minority rule when she mobilised African women to challenge the Southern Rhodesian constitution in 1962.

The Ian Smith government charged her with sedition and sentenced her to five years imprisonment although part of the sentence was suspended.

-HowAfrica

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