Top cop linked to First Lady's love affairs dies


    Mandizha died in China on Thursday from what State media reported to be a long battle with cancer.

    She was one of very few senior police officers on travel restrictions imposed by Western countries on President Mugabe and his loyalists.

    Police spokesman Oliver Mandipaka confirmed her death and said her body was expected to arrive in the country on Saturday next week.

    She was the first woman to be promoted to the rank of Police Deputy Commissioner, since Independence in 1980.

    Before being promoted to the rank of Deputy Commissioner, Mandizha was the officer commanding Police Support Unit, a highly trained unit in the ZRP which supports other units of the police with specialist skills.

    She was married to Grain Marketing Board general manager, Albert Mandizha, a former Senior Assistant Commissioner and Commander of police in Bulawayo.

    The late Mrs Mandizha was one of very few people close to President Mugabe’s family and a very close friend of the First Lady Grace Mugabe

    In some of the First Lady’s reported cases of infidelity, the then Morris Depot Commandant, Barbara Mandizha is alleged to have warned both exiled Zimbabwean businessman James Makamba and the First Lady that their affair would soon be in public, when she saw Grace driving Makamba into his Telecel offices located near the police general headquarters at the corner of Chinamano and Seventh Street.

    A few months later James Makamba was arrested on trumped up charges and kept in prison for months without trial. Grace secretly arranged for him to be granted bail so he could skip and leave the country.

    The plan worked, Makamba was granted bail and was driven to Beitbridge boarder post by police details handpicked by Mrs Mandizha.

    Makamba fled into South Africa where he stayed a few months before leaving for Egypt.

    Mugabe took over James Makamba’s Telecel the second largest cellular operator in Zimbabwe.

    In another incident Winston Changara, President Mugabe’s Aide De Camp, a senior police officer was said to be one Grace Mugabe’s many boyfriends.

    The pair was caught making love by a police sergeant Isaac W. S. Mabhungu who was managing senior officer’s mess at a police flat inside senior officer’s mess at ZRP’s Morris Depot.

    The sergeant alerted Barbara Mandizha who was Commandant Depot and a police inspector, Anna Chiwetu but they warned him that the case was over-sensitive. The sergeant was to keep quiet forever until he was forced to resign in March 2006."

    He was later found dead in a forest between Warren Park and the National Sports Stadium.

    During the 2008 general elections Mrs Mandizha barred Pan African Parliament (PAP) election observer team from witnessing junior officers who were being forced to vote for President Robert Mugabe at police general headquarters in Harare.

    Deputy Police Commissioner General Barbara Mandizha was present at general headquarters in room 50, keeping an eye on junior officers as they marked their ballots for Mugabe.

    It has also been reported that Mrs Mandizha took charge of the controversial postal votes command Centre.