Zimbabwe PM "fined" cows, sheep, cotton cloth

AP News
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Posted: Dec 12, 2011 6:47 AM
Zimbabwe PM "fined" cows, sheep, cotton cloth

State radio says a traditional African chief has fined Zimbabwe's prime minister two cows, two sheep and 10 yards (meters) of cotton cloth for breaking a tribal taboo that forbids marriage negotiations during a period deemed "sacred" in ancient folklore.

State radio said Monday that a Harare businesswoman who had a relationship with widower Morgan Tsvangirai claimed he paid a traditional "bride price" and married her in November when no marriage rites are allowed. Tsvangirai has acknowledged the relationship, which he broke off last month, but denied a marriage.

State radio said Tsvangirai was given 30 days to "pay" the chief.

Tsvangirai's party, in a fragile coalition government, says it does not recognize the chief's powers and insists the marriage claims were fabricated by Mugabe's party to discredit their leader.