Gaborone — President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi yesterday joined the world in mourning the passing of liberation icon and Zimbabwe's founding father, former president Robert Mugabe.
In an interview, following the signing of a condolence book at the Zimbabwe High Commission in Gaborone, President Dr Masisi said Mugabe's contribution would not be forgotten.
"I want to say to the people and government of Zimbabwe and family of the late former president Mugabe to comfort themselves in the full knowledge that, we mourn with them for the loss they have to bear with. We celebrate with them, the rich life, difficult as it was for most of his life as he was fighting for liberation," he said.
He said Mugabe lived a successful, colourful life worth celebrating.In Botswana, he said, the former president would be remembered fondly for his many visits and friendship, particularly to the family of former president Sir Ketumile Masire.
Mugabe's stewardship, astuteness and focused resolve as well as impeccable articulation of issues bedeviling Africa, particularly those of oppression in the region, were memorable.
"We wish him a peaceful rest," he said.Zimbabwe high commissioner, Mr Batiraishe Mukonoweshuro said Batswana and Zimbabweans came a long way noting that a number of Zimbabwean luminaries were accommodated in Botswana during the liberation war.
He said they used Botswana because the country had long been independent while Zimbabwe got liberated in 1980 which he said was a sign of solidarity.
Mr Mukonoweshuro said the condolence message book had been open since Monday and would be closed a day before the funeral.
"Zimbabweans residing in Botswana should feel free to visit the embassy to write whatever they feel about our icon, first liberator, first prime minister," he said.
Mugabe, 95, died in Singapore a week ago where he was seeking medical attention.
Mugabe was former leader of Zimbabwe's ruling party, the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (Zanu-PF), which he had led since 1980.
He leaves behind his wife Grace and three children.
Source : BOPA