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Public not welcome at Mugabe's private funeral

Mugabe's family met with President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Thursday afternoon to discuss funeral arrangements.

Former Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe’s body arrives at Rufaro Stadium, which was at about 90% capacity, to the sound of cheers from the crowd. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

HARARE - The family of Robert Mugabe said the former Zimbabwean President would not be buried on Sunday and as a family, they want a private funeral.

Mugabe's family met with President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Thursday afternoon to discuss funeral arrangements.

Mugabe died in a Singapore hospital on Friday last week.

His body is currently lying in state at a local stadium in Harare, where members of the public are paying their last respects.

WATCH: Robert Mugabe's body arrives home

Earlier on Thursday, Mugabe’s family released a statement accusing government of trying to coerce them to agree to a programme for the funeral service and burial, which contradict the late statesman’s wishes.

Now, following a meeting with Mnangagwa, the family’s spokesperson Leo Mugabe said they wanted a private funeral for him.

“We don’t want the public to come, we don’t want you to know where he’s’ going to be buried.”

He also said government was wrong to announce Mugabe would be buried on Sunday, saying that wouldn’t be the case.

“The government cannot announce on behalf of the family, I announce on behalf of the family and no we’re not witnessing the burial on Sunday.”

This announcement by the family comes as Mugabe’s body lies in state at Rufaru Stadium in Harare, where members of the public are paying tribute to him.”