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A MOZAMBICAN national accused of illegally entering Zimbabwe through South Africa stunned a Harare magistrate’s court last week when he said he come into the country to look for President Robert Mugabe whom he claimed to be his biological father.

Gabriel Ricardo was arrested on May 30 this year after entering the country through the Beitbridge border post without a passport.

He was only armed with his Mozambican ID and was later taken to Harare magistrates’ court on Thursday for illegal entry into the country.

“I came here looking for my parents,” Ricardo told the court presided over by magistrate Elijah Makomo.

Asked if he had managed to locate the parents, he replied, “I have not yet reached them”.

Further asked where the parents were, he replied, “It is the President of this country”.

Ricardo looked of sound mind and spoke in fluent English but with a clear Mozambican accent.

The Mozambican further claimed he was raised by foster parents who confided in him before they died that his real father was the long serving Zimbabwean leader.

Mugabe was said to have sired Ricardo with an unnamed woman when he was still in Mozambique during Zimbabwe’s war of liberation.

After the death of his guardians, he left for South Africa to find employment but found things tough.

He then later decided to cross into Zimbabwe “to connect with my roots”.

Ricardo further told court he had no qualms about entering Zimbabwe illegally because he had been assured by his former guardians he would not get into trouble because his biological father was the country’s president.

“I was misled into believing that I could just come since I was the President’s child,” said Ricardo, who wore dreadlocks extending to just below his shoulders.

In his ruling, Makomo said Ricardo claims to royalty would not save him from the principal charge of border jumping.

The magistrate convicted and handed him a one month imprisonment sentence which was wholly suspended on condition he will not commit a similar offence in a period.

The court also ordered his deportation to Mozambique but not before Ricardo had aised the court he would go back to his country and engage the Zimbabwean embassy in efforts to be reunited with “my father”.

Small faced, a brown complexion, slim and of medium height, Ricardo did not bear any obvious exact resemblance to President Mugabe.

However, his first name, Gabriel is President Mugabe’s other name.

Source : New Zimbabwe