Grace Mugabe Sues Newspaper

grace-mugabeZimbabwe’s first lady, Grace Mugabe is suing a newspaper for $15 million for publishing a WikiLeaks cable saying she benefited from illicit diamond trade.

Last week, The Standard newspaper quoting a cable sent by US ambassador James McGee to Washington in 2008, reported that Grace and other cronies of President Mugabe like Gideon Gono gained millions of dollars from illegal diamonds mining, in the Marange district of eastern Zimbabwe.

The state-owned Herald newpaper reported that the first lady had on Wednesday filed a $15 million defamation suit against The Standard, as damages over the article.

“The plaintiff is of high standing in Zimbabwe… furthermore she is the wife of His Excellency the President of Zimbabwe,” Mugabe’s lawyer, George Chikumbirike said.

“The imputation of such conduct on a person of such high standing, the mother of the nation, is to lower the respect with which [she] is held by all right thinking persons, to a point of disappearance,” said the summons.

Chikumbirike said the article wrongly portrayed Grace as corrupt in that “she used her position as the First Lady to access diamonds clandestinely, enriching herself in circumstances in which the country was facing serious foreign currency shortages.”

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