PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has rescued a Zimbabwean woman and her three children who had been stranded in the Democratic Republic of Congo for the past three years.

Ms Blessing Kapora (28) who has been making frantic efforts to return home for the past year without success returned home on the same plane with President Mnangagwa and his delegation.

Mnangagwa and his delegation travelled to DRC on Monday on Government business.

The President was told of Kapora’s predicament on his arrival in DRC on Tuesday and he agreed to travel with her back home.

As he stepped into the plane at Ndjili International Airport, President Mnangagwa, before taking his seat, walked towards Ms Kapora and her children, a girl and two boys aged 8, 6 and 5 respectively.

“Are you happy to be finally going home,” President Mnangagwa asked her to which she affirmed.

The President also asked the ages of the children and the languages they spoke.

He was told that the three children speak English and French.

“They are our children now, you should teach them our language and our ways,” said President Mnangagwa.

“You should also introduce them to our food like sadza and mufushwa.”

Ms Kapora left Zimbabwe for South Africa after completing her Ordinary Levels at Seke 2 High School in Harare in 2008.

In South Africa she fell in love with a Congolese man, now 36 years old, with whom she had three children.

“I was working at a restaurant and my husband was a security guard. We had our first born in 2010, our second in 2012 and our last born in 2013,” said Ms Kapora who was raised by her aunt following the death of her parents.

Her father died when she was three years old and her mother passed away in 2004 when she was doing her Form Two.

Ms Kapora said their lives changed when both she and her husband lost their jobs in 2013.

“In 2015, my husband called his father and told him of our predicament and he invited us to come and stay in DRC. We arrived in March 2015 but still none of us could find a job,” said Ms Kapora.

“My husband decided to go back to South Africa in 2017 to find a job but was met with challenges. Back in DRC, our first born failed to attend school because we had no money for fees.”

Ms Kapora said she got along with her father-in-law but there were moments of challenges associated with staying with in-laws.

“In 2017, I called my relatives in Zimbabwe and expressed my wish to come back home but they could not assist.

“They advised that I go to the embassy and ask that they assist me to go back home.

“An embassy official then told me that they had no money to send me home and called my relatives who said they couldn’t assist either.”

Ms Kapora said she never lost hope and kept contacting the embassy until Sunday when she was called to the embassy.

She said at some point, she did not have a mobile phone and had to rely on begging neighbours either for money or to use their phones to contact the embassy.

Ms Kapora said they had not separated with her husband but they decided that coming back to Zimbabwe was best.

“My wish now is that I could get assistance to send my children to school so that they can learn like their age mates,” she said.

Ms Kapora, who met President Mnangagwa for the first time, said she used to follow Zimbabwean affairs via the internet and knew that the country has a new leader.

“I last saw my family in 2015 and I am happy that I am going to reunite with them because it’s been three years since I last saw them,” said Ms Kapora.

“I would like to thank President Mnangagwa for this very kind gesture and allowing us to fly with him back home. Finally, I am going home.”

– the herald