LYDIA Chibwe, mother to the late Prime Minister and opposition MDC-T leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, is trending on social media after attracting attention when a video of her protesting the presence of her son’s widow, Elizabeth Macheka, and party acting president, Nelson Chamisa, went viral.
Chibwe, now popularly referred to as ‘Gogo Tsvangirai’, even threatened to commit suicide because of Chamisa’s presence at the funeral wake as mourners gathered at the One Commando Barracks mortuary in Harare to receive Tsvangirai’s body from South Africa where he died.
As people shared the video, the jersey she was wearing quickly stole the limelight as it reminded Zimbabweans of former Zanu-PF youth secretary Kudzai Chipanga’s similar oversized and unfashionable jersey he wore when he made an apology live on ZBCtv to army generals and the nation for condemning the army leadership.
Hash tags and memes were created for Chipanga’s jersey that was named the ‘humility jersey’ or ‘apolojersey’ which could be worn each time one wanted to apologise.
Now Gogo Tsvangirai, whose outburst might have been as a result of grief and old age, has fallen prey to the memes as she is the latest victim. Her jersey has been dubbed the nhamo (funeral wake) jersey which people are comically saying can be worn when one wants to go and cause chaos at a funeral.
Also, Tsvangirai’s mother is quite unpopular among some women who feel she is being hard on Elizabeth by first denying her access to visit her husband while in hospital in South Africa and now refusing her to be part of the funeral proceedings. A hash tag, #IStandWithElizabethTsvangirai has been created to encourage her as they feel she does not deserve to be mistreated by her husband’s family members.
Undoubtedly, Gogo Tsvangirai, who was also captured drinking Coca-Cola and seemingly guarding the 2-litre bottle jealously, is hogging the limelight and has become an Internet sensation as several Facebook and Twitter pages have actually been opened using the Gogo Tsvangirai name. On these pages, her images taken from the funeral wake are being shared, alas in a comic way, about her sentiments on her son’s death as well as her jersey.
Local comedians are also cashing in on Gogo Tsvangirai as they have created videos mimicking her.
But in all this MDC-T secretary general Douglas Mwonzora is not impressed as he has castigated those who are insulting Morgan Tsvangirai’s mother on social media saying such behaviour is uncalled for.
“The MDC-T totally condemns the insults directed towards members of the Tsvangirai family especially Morgan Tsvangirai’s biological mother Mbuya Lydia,” tweeted Mwonzora.
Meanwhile, Killer T has penned a song — RIP Morgan Tsvangirai — in tribute to the late Prime Minister who died last Wednesday after battling cancer.
Tsvangirai will be buried today at his rural home in Buhera.