HomeLocal NewsSome of Edgar Tekere’s true friends

Some of Edgar Tekere’s true friends

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What Tekere said about them . . .

Roger Boka — I did not know Boka until on my return to Zimbabwe after independence. He sought me out and introduced himself to me. He was interested, he said, in improving my image so as to shape me for the new role I was assuming.
When I was sacked from the party his concern mounted, and I would find that my rates had been paid.
I would receive monthly cash payments, none amounting to less than Z$800 000, which was a goodly sum in those days.

Makomva — In 1983, Makomva arrived at my house in Mandara accompanied by the owner of Tanaka Power. We chatted a while, until it was time to leave, and I saw them to their car. Makomva quietly said to me that he had left an envelope in the lounge telling me to read the contents later on. After they left, I opened the envelope, to find a cheque for Z$3 000. In 1983, this amounted to a small fortune.

Jonathan Kadzura — Jonathan is a very successful businessman, and a close friend. After my sacking, he would often visit me at home, saying: “Ehe, mukoma Eddie, zvinhu zvenyu zvepolitics hinomunodyei?” (Brother Eddie, you and your politics thing, what do you want with it?) This admonishment would always be accompanied by a gift of cash.

Enoch and Farai Musabaeka — Enoch, the former mayor of Mutare is the father, and Farai is his son. The two would make payments into my account at the bank, the manager of which was Mr Matangaidze, who would also assist me, even after he retired.

Kingstone Makoni — Kingstone was my uncle, and Oliver Chakonda came to the house with Z$2 000 as a welcome present to help me settle in.

Joseph Sanhanga — Jo would pay my bills, saying: “It is month-end, would you have your power supply cut?”

Israel Magwenzi — He said to me: “I have been a success in life because I followed the advice you gave at that talk, and I am lucky to have met you. Please enjoy a share of my success.” With this, he wrote me a cheque for Z$5 000.”

Gideon Gono — In early December of 2001, I met Jonathan Kadzura, who presented me with a cheque for Z$200 000. He said: “The person who gave you this money has borrowed it from me, but he will pay me back.” When I asked who it was who had been so generous, he replied: “Mukoma Eddie, shamwari dzenyu dzinopera here?” (You have countless friends). Gono added a further Z$300 000.

Sam Paweni — Paweni, together with his wife, had been accused of misappropriating food assistance, and sent to jail. I was horrified at the injustice of this, and burst out in Parliament, “You have sent Paweni to jail, but the real criminal walks free and is sitting with us at the high table!”

Richard Mashave, Leonard Nyamutsamba and Bill Tanhire — These three friends have always assisted me.

Mr and Mrs Matangaidze — Mr and Mrs Matangaidze, of Matan Holdings in Mutare, regularly call me, with, “Would you please find time to drive by our business. We have a parcel for you.” Inevitably I am presented with a veritable parcel, whose contents consist of bundles of banknotes.

Ephraim Masawi — Ephraim Masawi has all the details of my bank account, and will make payments into it from time to time.
General Solomon Mujuru — The General also has my bank account details, which he obtained from Masawi — and has assisted me from time to time.

Tim Chiganze — Through Patrick Chinamasa, I received a message from Chiganze, to say that each time I come to Harare, I can stay in a Zimbabwe Sun hotel at his expense. So far I have not taken advantage of this kind offer, as I stay with my sister and brother-in-law.

My perfect “sahwira”, Ibbo Mandaza — When I was secretary- general of Zanu in Mozambique, Mandaza was an academic, teaching at Dar es Salaam University in Tanzania. Throughout most of 1979 he worked with the party’s department of manpower in Maputo. Since 2002, Ibbo Mandaza has been paying for all my medication.

Allan Mushonga and Anne Derges — My thanks to Allan Mushonga for his long hours of patient transcription of my words, and to Anne Derges who helped Ibbo Mandaza by transcribing my long-winded interviews and discussion sessions.

My Comrades — But my most heartfelt thanks must go to those comrades, both those in front and those at the rear, who participated in putting down the insurrection of 31 January 1978, that was organised by Hamadziripi, Chigowe, Mparuri and Mandizvidza, without a shot being fired and with no injury or death.

My stroke — During the night of May 28th 2002, I was asleep at home when I suffered a mild stroke. If my wife, a nursing sister, had not been with me, I should have died that night. She called the ambulance service to take me to hospital, and contacted Dr Pfumojena. Dr Pfumojena called it a “no stroke”, as for some reason neither my speech nor my mobility was affected. Only later, in 2003, I suffered a residual effect and one side of my mouth dropped, but this was rectified with physiotherapy.

Simon Muzenda was still alive then, though himself unwell, and he heard about my illness and asked the Minister of Health, Dr Parirenyatwa what he knew of my condition.

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