OBITUARY | Remembering Zimbabwe’s gracious, foremost first lady

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OBITUARY | Remembering Zimbabwe’s gracious, foremost first lady

Janet Banana, the wife of that country’s first president, died last week after a lifetime of devotion to her gay husband

Lenin Ndebele

Janet Mbuyazwe Banana, widow of Zimbabwe’s first president, Canaan Banana, died last week.

The 83-year-old lived part of her life standing by her gay husband in a homophobic country which eventually saw her flee to the UK. 

The cookie crumbled for the respected Banana family in 1997 when Canaan, who died in 2003, was arrested on charges of sodomy after accusations during the murder trial of his former bodyguard, Jefta Dube. Dube shot dead Patrick Mashiri for taunting him about being “Banana’s homosexual wife”...

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