The first lady of Zimbabwe Mrs Grace Mugabe has sparked outrage by suggesting women are to blame for rape because of the clothes they wear. The 50-year-old married to the controversial 91-year-old President Robert Mugabe, reportedly told the crowd at a rally in Mberengwa, southern Zimbabwe that “if you are raped, it’s your fault.”

She castigated miniskirts saying “If you walk around wearing mini skirts displaying your thighs and inviting men to drool over you, then you want to complain when you have been raped?…That is unfortunate because it will be your fault.” The mother-of-four and and former typist who admits she is as “thick-skinned as a crocodile” made the comments which are in contrast to those of her husband, President Robert Mugabe, who two months ago said his government was “seriously” considering castrating rapists. “Don’t say Mr Mugabe is becoming cruel because we want to protect our women. So men, take care,” he said.

It is widely believed that Mrs Grace Mugabe wants to succeed her husband as president when he passes on but she has steadily refuted such claims. Mrs Mugabe began an affair with President Robert Mugabe when she was a teenage mother-of one while the former first lady, Sally Mugabe, was dying of kidney disease.

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