In September 2014, Zimbabwe’s out-going first lady, Grace Mugabe, said her husband, out-going President Robert Mugabe, is the poorest among leaders all over the world. Grace Mugabe said this whilst addressing traditional chiefs gathered at her multi-million dollar compound in Mazowe to support her political ambitions.
We break down how much ‘the poorest president in the world’ is actually worth. Here is a look at some of the assets Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace own.
US$4 million (R56 million) Hong Kong mansion
The luxury villa is set among the green hills of Hong Kong’s New Territories, and is said to be one of Grace Mugabe’s favourite properties.
US$9.9 million (R138-million) Zimbabwe mansion
Considered more of a palace, the property is located in Harare. Nicknamed the Blue Roof, it features 25 bedrooms, a large outdoor pool, two lakes, a massive dining room that can seat more than 30 guests, a large master bedroom with super king-size bed and a multimillion-dollar radar system.
US$47 million (R660-million) England palace
Mugabe is said to own Hamilton Palace in Sussex, England, with his business associate, Nicolas Van Hoogstraten. The mansion is now a dangerous construction site.
US$3,5 million (R45 million) Sandhurst mansion
The Star newspaper in Johannesburg reported that Grace recently bought a property around the corner in Sandhurst for R45 million (US$3,5 million) and was also negotiating to buy another. The property is located at Number 37 Killarney Road. The price of the property on Killarney Road could go up to a whopping R49 million (US$3,7 million) when transfer costs, renovations and finishings are added.
US$4,5 million (R63 million) Harare’s Hellensvale mansion
A few months ago, Grace and her husband purchased another house in Harare’s Hellensvale suburb for US$4,5 million. As part of the purchase agreement, the former owners have been allowed to stay in the house for the next three years.
In 2000, Mugabe seized 15 000 hectares of land from white farmers. He allegedly converted some of the farms into personal retreats.
These are the 13 farms Mugabe is said to have taken over personally.
1. Gushungo Estates 4046ha Mazowe, 2. Gushungo Dairies 1000ha, 3. MazoweIron Mask Estate 1046ha, 4. Mazowe Sigaru Farm 873ha, 5. Mazowe Gwebi Wood 1200ha
6. Mazowe Gwina Farm 1445ha, 7. Banket Leverdale Farm 1488ha, 8. Banket Highfield Farm 445ha, 9. Norton Cressydale Estate 676ha, 10. Norton Tankatara Farm 575ha, 11. Norton John O’Groat Farm 760ha, 12. Norton Clifford Farm 1050ha, 13. Norton Bassiville 1200ha
US$1.14 million (R16-million) Mercedes Benz S600L
The vehicle was custom-built in Germany to Mugabe’s specifications. The car is able to withstand AK-47 bullets, landmines and grenades. It also features a CD and DVD player, internet access and anti-bugging devices.