PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe has made his fifth trip to Singapore in four months, media reports said.
Mugabe, 87, flew out of Harare on Friday last week “to collect his ailing wife”, Grace, the Standard newspaper reported on Sunday.
The paper said Mugabe would return on Wednesday, before making another foreign trip to Rome, Italy, for Friday’s Food and Agriculture Organisation summit.
Grace Mugabe has not been seen in public since April 7 when she and the President flew out of Harare. A striking Air Zimbabwe flight crew was ordered back to work for the trip which the airline said was “national duty”.
Presidential spokesman George Charamba has refused to comment on the First Lady’s absence amid conflicting newspaper claims about the real reasons for her Asian trip.
Initial reports said she had fallen in the bathroom of the couple’s Borrowdale mansion and dislocated a hip, but the privately-owned Daily News has since reported she is in fact on a degree study programme with an unidentified Chinese university.
Mugabe went to Singapore in January as part of his annual holiday. He returned there in February, Charamba telling reporters at the time that it was to correct a problem with eye surgery he underwent during his holiday.
He was back in Singapore in March, Charamba said, for a review on his cataract operation. He returned spotting a new pair of glasses.
Mugabe married Grace in 1996 following the death of his first wife, Sally, in 1992. The couple have three children together – Bona, Robert Jnr and Chatunga.