Michael Jackson had a secret girlfriend who his children called “mom”, close friends of the singer have told the Sunday Mirror.
We can reveal that the star was in a long-term relationship with Ugandan-born Grace Rwaramba at the time he died.
Ian Barkley, who travelled the world with Jacko for three years as his personal photographer, says the couple’s romance was an open secret among staff after they fell in love while she was nanny to his children.
Ian told how, behind closed doors, Grace, 42, acted like a normal mum to Jackson’s kids Prince Michael, 12, Paris Katherine, 11 and six-year-old Prince Michael II.
“Grace loved Michael and he loved her,” he said. “The kids called her ‘Mom’.”
Last week Jackson’s former head of security Matt Fiddes revealed the King of Pop had a secret lover – but refused to reveal her name.
Fiddes, 30, who has known Jacko since the 1990s, said: “The family were aware that there was someone special in his life who he loved and adored and had his ups and downs with.
“For some time she’s been present in his life. She wasn’t a celebrity figure – absolutely not. I imagine she is distraught right now.”
Another of Jackson’s bodyguards said: “Matt was referring to Grace. They were more like a married couple than employer and employee.”
The minder, who asked not to be identified
added: “Grace was the closest person to Michael and the kids. She will be broken-hearted. The children were always their joint priority and like any couple they’d row if they disagreed about how they were being brought up.
“But the difference between Grace and other women in Michael’s life was that she had absolutely no interest in fame. It was something she actively avoided and Michael was determined to keep her and their relationship out of the public gaze.
“The romance was well-known among staff but it was made very clear to them that this was not something that should become part of the public domain.”