A dozen leaders for PM’s wedding
HARARE – Nearly a dozen African leaders and other global high-rollers are expected for Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s September 15 wedding to Elizabeth Macheka, in a telling show of the MDC leader’s pulling power.
Although Tsvangirai’s courtiers would not release the guest list citing security reasons and other protocols, his spokesperson Luke Tamborinyoka would neither confirm nor deny the number of available heads of state.
“There is a committee (working on the issue) and we are not certain yet, who is coming or not. Maybe the committee is aware because it is the one, which is seized with the matter,” he told the Daily News from North Carolina in the United States yesterday where the MDC leader is attending the 2012 Democratic National Convention.
With the couple sending out about 500 invites to friends and family, it is understood that Botswana President Ian Khama, his Tanzanian counterpart Jakaya Kikwete and Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga are among those who have already confirmed their attendance.
Having engaged the imposing Macheka earlier this year, Tsvangirai is to tie the knot at the scenic and exclusive RainTree Gardens in Umwinsdale, Harare next week Saturday.
By taking the Harare businesswoman as his wedded partner — following the death of his first wife Susan in a horrific March 2009 car crash — the former trade unionist has managed to douse constant fires and speculation about his love life.
Tsvangirai had six children with his first wife.
Prior to Macheka’s introduction, the MDC leader had been linked to a string of women — an issue which was beginning to erode his moral standing and support.
His nuptials and commitment to Elizabeth — a widowed mother of one herself — came after the widely-reported Locadia Karimatsenga Tembo saga in which Tsvangirai paid damages to the equally feisty commodity trader’s family.
An established trader and businesswoman in her own right, Elizabeth is the daughter of former Chitungwiza mayor and Zanu PF central committee member Joseph Macheka.
Their wedding comes as the Tsvangirais have just moved into their plush multi-million dollar Highlands mansion, which was financed under a government programme that also caused a bit of political problems for the MDC leader.
The A-list property was acquired and renovated after the Zimbabwean PM did not get the green light to move into one of the government houses — notably Zimbabwe House.
With the PM’s wedding planners and other helpers refusing to confirm the guest list since Tsvangirai himself was also away to authorise it, there was also speculation that the PM’s fiancée was also getting her wedding attire from Asia.
Recently, she was spotted at a public function in Indian attire.
Meanwhile, several government ministers, diplomats and other dignitaries from organisations linked to him are also expected to attend the party.