In Summary
  • Her dissertation has never been made public, according to local media.
  • Robert and Grace have kept a low profile since their spectacular reversal of fortune.


Zimbabwean anti-corruption investigators said Monday they are probing whether former first lady Grace Mugabe fraudulently obtained a doctorate that she apparently received within months and the dissertation for which remains unpublished.

Grace, whose apparent desire to succeed her 93-year-old husband prompted the army takeover that eventually saw Robert Mugabe resign, was awarded a PhD by the University of Zimbabwe in 2014.


Critics argued at the time that Grace, 52, had not actually studied or undertaken research to earn the doctorate and that she had been handed her diploma just months after enrolling. PhDs typically require several years of full-time research and writing.

Her dissertation has never been made public, according to local media, breaking with the established policy of most Zimbabwean public universities to publish doctoral students' theses.

The state-run Herald newspaper reported in 2014 that Grace's dissertation was on the theme of "changing social structure (and) the functions of the family" and that she undertook research on Zimbabwean children's homes.

Grace was personally capped by then-president Mugabe, who was also the chancellor of the University of Zimbabwe, and praised by other government officials who defended the controversial degree award.

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