MBIRA queen Chiwoniso Maraire was yesterday laid to rest at her rural home in Chakohwa Village in Mutambara, Manicaland, amid a family feud which saw her body spending another night outside her home.Traditionally, the body is supposed to lie in state in the house but Chiwoniso’s body, which was first denied entry into her father’s home in Bluffhill, Harare, was also denied at the rural home to the bemusement of the village elders.
Chiwoniso lived at the Bluffhill home, but her body was denied entry by her family.
The elders and mourners questioned why she was not given a proper send-off worthy of a mbira icon with some of them walking out.
Controversy surrounds the family’s decision not to afford Chiwoniso a traditional funeral and consequently the family was fined US$50 by the village elders for breaking a traditional custom.
A family member who requested anonymity confirmed the developments but said it was not clear why the family denied Chiwoniso’s body entry into her rural home.
“The decision to deny the body entry into the home was made when the family met at the funeral parlour, but it was not clear why they decided to do that.
“What we know is that the doctors confirmed that she died of pneumonia,” the family member said.