Mugabe Celebrates Birthday Without Giant Cake, Usual Pomp

EX-President Robert Mugabe (file photo).

Harare: Zimbabwe’s former President, Robert Mugabe celebrates his 94th birthday on Wednesday devoid of the usual extravagance people had come to expect.

Government last year declared February 21, Mugabe’s birth date, a holiday.

Mugabe was not known for a subdued taste, and blew over a million dollars every year celebrating his birthday.

The former ruling Zanu PF leader saw in his 92nd year with the slaughter of wild animals, including an elephant, which were cooked and served to his guests.

Guests also ate a giant cake.

His party took place at an exclusive lodge, spa and golf course in Victoria Falls, and it was estimated to have cost u.s $1 million

“He is our icon. We will do whatever we can to come up with a memorable day for him. He is our leader and we will do as much as we can,” Zanu-PF Secretary for Youth Affairs Pupurai Togarepi is quoted saying by the state owned Herald.

“On a birthday there are a lot of gifts that are given to the person marking a birthday; we are also going to give him a cake.”

Mugabe’s lavish birthday parties had become an annual pilgrimage for loyalists and those seeking favours from the veteran leader.

Last year, Cabinet ministers presented Mugabe with a special wheelchair as a belated birthday present, confirming widespread reports that the vagaries of ill health associated with old age were taking a toll on him.