February 10th, 2009
02:29 PM ET

Champagne, lobster and caviar: Robert Mugabe plans binge in land of hunger

Martin Fletcher
The Times

It is the 85th birthday of President Mugabe this month and the zealots of his Zanu (PF) party are determined that it should be an occasion that their great leader will never forget.

In recent days they have been out soliciting “donations” from corporate Zimbabwe and have drawn up a wish list that is scarcely credible in a land where seven million citizens survive on international food aid, 94 per cent are jobless and cholera rampages through a population debilitated by hunger.

The list includes 2,000 bottles of champagne (Moët & Chandon or ’61 Bollinger preferred); 8,000 lobsters; 100kg of prawns; 4,000 portions of caviar; 8,000 boxes of Ferrero Rocher chocolates; 3,000 ducks; and much else besides. A postscript adds: “No mealie meal” — the ground corn staple on which the vast majority of Zimbabweans survived until the country’s collapse rendered even that a luxury.


Filed under: Global 360° • Zimbabwe
soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. Prema

    it is sad to see the childrend starve. what is he thinking of?? greed is unshakeable, even death does not render remorse. may god easy the pain of the downtrodden and beaten. perhaps in death comes peace.

    February 11, 2009 at 7:07 am |
  2. nandi bhebhe

    zimbabweans have been trying to tell the world that mugabe & his henchman are beyond redemption for as long as he has been in power. After the financial collapse you suddenly realise those poor zimbabweans have been trying to tell the world of this man's excesses! welcome to the real world thats is not defined by the GDP

    February 10, 2009 at 10:46 pm |
  3. Cherisa

    This is more evidence of how out of touch Mugabe is with everything going on in Zimbabwe, and how very little he cares. Hopefully there are strong people in the unity government willing to stand up and say ENOUGH.

    I have to admit I'm bothered by the Wall Street comparisons. People in Zimbabwe are losing their lives, not their livelihood.

    February 10, 2009 at 6:55 pm |
  4. Luis

    Obama ask, "Zimbabwe can join your party?"

    Inflation is going to through the roof big time. Zimbabwe happens because their central banks print to much money. This the way america is heading too.

    Be conservative. Dont invest in the markets. Invest in gold. Can foods, batterries, Candles, Bottles of water, A shotgun with extra ammo, toothpaste, Bandages etc.....

    February 10, 2009 at 6:39 pm |
  5. sean brizendine

    anderson for some reason when it comes to mugabe i am not surprised one bit.
    "sean in santa rosa"

    February 10, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  6. Heather,ca

    But of course he is. I wouldnt expect anything less. Perhaps he wrote the new memo that over rides the memo that the rest of the world operates from regarding shame and human decency. Since AIG and BofA and etc have been operating by the new memo. Its like raising money for a charity that helps the hungry and all the people giving the money are envited to a big high price night feasting on lobster etc. It sort of speaks for itself.

    February 10, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  7. Casey | Sebastopol, CA

    Sounds like a party at AIG or BofA.

    February 10, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
  8. JC- Los Angeles

    Perhaps they have learned their social graces from our esteemed leaders on Wall Street or Capitol Hill, from members of the House or Senate, from heads of mortgage banks or hedge funds or from the disasters found in Detroit.

    We should not be throwing any stones at any glass houses.

    February 10, 2009 at 2:49 pm |