Government spokesperson, Nick Mangwana has said exiled legendary musician is free to return home to attend the funeral of his brother who died last week.
This follows recent statements by Mapfumo where he alleged that he is fearing for his should he return home. Mapfumo is a well-known government critic and has made his political allegiance to the opposition leader, Nelson Chamisa known.
In a tweet post, Mangwana however, said the Chimurenga music legend is free to return and attend his brother’s funeral fearing possible arrest or harm from the government due to his strong anti-government views.
“We wish to express our sincere condolences to Mr Thomas Mapfumo over the sad loss of his younger brother, Lancelot (MHSRIP). We wish to advise Mr Mapfumo that he has nothing to fear in Zimbabwe. The security of his person is as assured as the rest of us,” Mangwana said.
Mapfumo has been on the government’s throat for a while.
He was critical of the country’s governance system, a theme inherent in his songs. Before independence, Mukanya was jailed by the Smith regime for his strong stance against human rights abuses.
In 2008, Mapfumo failed to attend his mother’s funeral, burial or memorial service, citing the possibility that authorities would harass him or worse.
Mapfumo, who openly supports opposition Citizens Coalition for Change leader Nelson Chamisa and his party, was last home in April 2018 where he staged some homecoming gigs. He was not harassed.
He also took the time to visit the tombs of his late mother and those of relatives who died during his long absence.