The Tsvangirai family has said the late MDC leader was a polygamist and Elizabeth was never going to be allowed to monopolise the funeral.

Tsvangirai’s brother, Manase told The Herald that all wives had to be recognised. Tsvangirai was married to Susan Mhundwa who died in a car crash in 2009 and they had six children. He sired four other children with two different wives before his latest marriage to Elizabeth.

“We have to treat all these wives equally. Maiguru Elizabeth was with the body from South Africa to Harare, naturally one has to give others a chance.  When we were preparing to depart from One Commando to Buhera for the burial, we were asked to provide four people to accompany the body and it followed that she had to give others a chance and that is why she travelled by road. It had nothing to do with allegations of ill-treating her.

“When she came here last night, we gave her a room to sleep and what better recognition do you expect and she was quite happy. If you have three wives, for example, and even if one dies, that symbolic union cannot be taken away, particularly when there are children and when lobola was paid. If you do not agree with my interpretation we can ask any elder around.”