The late international music icon Dr Oliver “Tuku” Mtukudzi has been declared a national hero.

The announcement was made by President Mnangagwa at Dr Mtukudzi’s residence in Norton this evening. Tuku becomes the first musician to be a national hero.

The president visited the Mtukudzi home in Norton on Thursday where he consoled the late musician’s wife Daisy and the Mtukudzi family. Mnangagwa called the singer a patriot who has “given us comfort during difficult times.”

The National Hero status is the highest honour that can be conferred to an individual by Zimbabwe, and the recipient is entitled to be buried at the National Heroes’ Acre. The President said the Mtukudzi family will decide where and when Tuku will be buried.

Norton Member of Parliament, Temba Mliswa was quick to celebrate the news on his Twitter handle. “I wish to thank president E.D Mnangagwa and ZANU PF politburo,  and Kirsty Coventry for their recommendations to accord Dr.”Tuku” National Hero status,” he said in a tweet..

Opposition leader Nelson Chamisa also visited Mtukudzi’s home and expressed his wish to meet with Mnangagwa at the funeral and mourn together.