Plane carrying Robert Mugabe's body arrives in Zimbabwe

Body of former Zimbabwean leader Mugabe to leave Singapore on Wednesday

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A vehicle believed to be carrying the body of former Zimbabwe president Robert Mugabe left a Singapore funeral parlor on Wednesday morning, with the remains to be returned to his homeland for burial.

Mr Mugabe, 95, a controversial leader who ruled his country for nearly 40 years, will lie in state at two different locations in the capital of Harare.

Mugabe's body was expected to arrive in Zimbabwe on Wednesday at 3 p.m. (1300 GMT).

At the time, President Julius Nyerere of Tanzania told Mr Mugabe that he had inherited "the jewel of Africa", and there was much hope of a new dawn for the black majority country, formerly known as Rhodesia.

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Mugabe died last week in Singapore having been hospitalised in April.

His increasingly tyrannical leadership and economic mismanagement prompted millions to leave the country.

Zimbabweans wait for the arrival of the body of former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe at the main airport in Harare, September 11, 2019.

Yet Harare residents appeared largely unconcerned, with shops remaining open and people going about their daily errands.

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On Thursday and Friday, Mr Mugabe is due to lie in state at Rufaro Stadium, in Mbare township in Harare, where he was sworn in as Zimbabwe's first prime minister after independence from the United Kingdom in 1980.

A relative has said that in line with native Shona customs, traditional chiefs from Zvimba will have a final say on where the former leader will be buried.

The 35,000-seater stadium is where Mugabe took his oath of office when Ian Smith, the prime minister under the colonial Rhodesian regime, handed over power.

We have often spoken in this space of the enormous feeling of pride that swept across Jamaica when the flag of independent Zimbabwe was raised for the first time on April 18, 1980.

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It will then be taken to Rufaro stadium in the capital's poor Mbare neighborhood for viewing for two days before it is moved Saturday to the National Sports Stadium, where African heads of state, dignitaries and the public will attend a service, according to a government statement.

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