Ex-President Robert Mugabe is reportedly worth more than $1bn despite his country being one of the poorest in the world.
Mugabe’s wealth has come under the microscope following a military coup earlier in the week.
The 93-year-old dictator has accumulated significant wealth during his rule under which thousands of people have been killed over the past 37 years.
Local media reports suggest a small part of his fortune was reaped from Zimbabwe’s diamond deposits. Mugabe owns the Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Co.
He has repeatedly been accused of stealing from the country’s coffers, while he also reportedly acquired 15 acres of land during land seizures in 2000.
According to a 2001 US diplomatic cable, later released by the whistle-blowing organisation WikiLeaks, Mugabe has about $1.75bn worth of assets, mostly invested outside Zimbabwe.
It said that while reliable information was difficult to find, there were rumours his assets “include everything from secret accounts in Switzerland, the Channel Islands and the Bahamas to castles in Scotland.”
Opposition politicians have claimed the Mugabes own 14 farms in the bankrupt country, which would be in contravention of the constitution, which limits land holdings.
The best known is the Omega Dairy farm, one of the largest dairy farms in southern Africa.
Although the family has claimed not to be wealthy, Mugabe has flaunted his wealth in the past. Just three years ago, he famously dined on elephant and lion meat at his lavish 90th birthday celebrations.
Mugabe’s home in Harare is said to be extraordinarily opulent but it’s not the only mansion in his property portfolio. The president purchased a $5.2m mansion in Hong Kong in 2013 and also owns Hamilton Palace in Sussex, UK, which was estimated to be worth about $40m before it became a construction site.
He is also said to own a custom-built Mercedes Benz s600L that is able to withstand AK-47 bullets, landmines and grenades. It also features a CD and DVD player, internet access and anti-bugging devices.
The Citizen reported that Mugabe — who is a trained teacher — also owns a Rolls-Royce Phantom IV: a colonial-era British luxury car so exclusive, only 18 were ever manufactured.
The vintage black car is estimated to be worth more than Zimbabwe’s entire GDP.
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