x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 29 July 2017

Tsvangirai claims crash 'an accident'

Morgan Tsvangirai returns to Zimbabwe after his check-up in Botswana, and claims his car crash was an accident.

The wrecked vehicle lays alongside the  road near Harare  March 7, 2009, after being involved in an accident  Friday in which Zimbabwean prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai was injured and his wife Susan was killed.
The wrecked vehicle lays alongside the road near Harare March 7, 2009, after being involved in an accident Friday in which Zimbabwean prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai was injured and his wife Susan was killed.

The prime minister of Zimbabwe, Morgan Tsvangirai, returned today to his country after undergoing checks in Botswana, to prepare his wife's funeral. Mr Tsvangirai's wife Susan was killed and the prime minister was injured on Friday when a foreign aid lorry hit their car. As he stepped off the Botswana presidential jet at Harare's international airport, the premier did not have any visible bandages, but his face still appeared swollen. "I'm feeling fine," was all Mr Tsvangirai told reporters as he headed from the airport to his Harare home to meet with his children and prepare for the funeral.

Mr Tsvangirai ruled out foul play in the car crash that killed his wife, declaring the collision was an accident. "When something happens, there is always speculation but I want to say in this case, if there was any foul play, it was one in a thousand," he said. "It was an accident and unfortunately it took her life," he told mourners gathered at his Harare home.

Political tensions with President Robert Mugabe, Mr Tsvangirai's partner in a new unity government, had prompted speculation over the cause of the crash. The premier was taken to a private Harare hospital but flew to Botswana on Saturday for further medical checks. "We understand from the information we are getting from Botswana that the progress in terms of his recovery is quite remarkable and satisfactory," Nelson Chamisa, the spokesman for Mr Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), told South African radio earlier.

"We are just hoping and praying to God that his life is completely out of danger within the shortest possible time," he said. Mr Tsvangirai turns 57 tomorrow, but will spend the day at a public service in a Harare stadium where supporters will pay their respects to his wife of 31 years. Her body will lie in state at their Harare home, while the burial will take place on Wednesday morning in their hometown of Buhera, the MDC said.

Mr Tsvangirai's spokesman James Maridadi said the premier would spend the day with his children and other relatives to prepare for the funeral. "The prime minister is feeling well. As you know he went to Botswana for a second opinion," Mr Maridadi told reporters. "Most of his children are now here. This is a family funeral. He will meet with his relatives as the day goes on." * AFP