By, Chidi Odinkalu
Our African rulers don’t just want unseemly opulence on earth while in power; many of them also apparently enjoy marbled sepulchres for their abode in the hereafter. Mobutu Sense Seko, who’s buried in far-away Morocco resides in one. He’s in good company though…
Two pioneers of the Independence struggle, Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah in Accra & Mzee Jomo Kenyatta in Nairobi, rest in pretty “befitting” surroundings. But, you may say their mausoleums are also fitting national monuments for founders of their respective countries.
Like Nkrumah & Jomo Kenyatta, Mgwazi, Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda led his country, Malawi, to Independence & died outside his country in Johannesburg, South Africa. This necro-palace is his most lasting legacy it seems.
We can say Nkrumah, Jomo Kenyatta & Kamuzu Banda led their respective countries to Independence. Poor Zambia has to foot the bills for these expensive graves for Fred Chiluba & Levi Mwanwasa. Kenneth Kaunda who led Zambia to Independence & preceded both in office remains alive.
Malawi’s 3rd President, Mgwazi Bingu wa Mutharika, who was buried in a state of semi-putrefaction, nevertheless resides under a dome in death. Laurent Kabila in DRC has his own shrine.