Grace Mugabe Seriously Ill With Stomach Cancer
Zimbabwe’s first lady Grace Mugabe is being treated for colon cancer and has had multiple surgeries in Singapore in the last few months, CNBC reports.
A photo of Grace looking thin and frail went viral on social media, according to news24. In the photo, she appeared to be inside the state house standing next to an unidentified woman, News24 reported. Also photographed was President Robert Mugabe and a man wearing colors of the South African flag.
Oppah Muchinguri, a Zanu-PF party member, confirmed last week that Mugabe’s wife was sick and was seeking treatment outside the country.
Commemorations to mark International Women’s Day on March 8 were the last time Grace appeared in public.
Grace dominated Zimbabwe’s political scene towards the end of 2015 when she was nominated to lead the Zanu-PF Women’s League. Her name came up often in 2014 as a likely successor for her husband, President Robert Mugabe.
The first lady was forced to remain in Singapore in January after the first family’s annual holiday, with Mugabe telling supporters on his arrival back home that the first lady had undergone appendix surgery.
Grace later came back to Zimbabwe and said she was well enough to push the ruling party’s women’s league agenda.
The Zimbabwe Independent reported that Grace was suffering from colon cancer, that she’d had surgery while vacationing in Singapore and had gone back there for treatment. Part of her colon was removed. “About 30 centimeters was removed, but now she is in a bad state. That is why she disappeared from the public spotlight,” a relative told Zimbabwe Independent.
This week, one of Grace’s relatives told the Zimbabwe Independent, “The First Lady needs our prayers. She is very ill. I don’t know why the first family is being secretive about her illness. Zimbabweans would sympathise with her if they knew and they could help pray for her recovery.”