DYNAMOS board of directors chairman Richard Chiminya was laid to rest at Warren Hills Cemetery yesterday with soccer players, officials, administrators, high-ranking government officials and businessmen uniting to pay their last respects to the man credited for founding the country’s most successful club.
REPORT BY OUR SPORTS CORRESPONDENT
Chiminya died at the age of 79 at Parirenyatwa Hospital on Sunday night after a short illness.
His uncle — Ignatius Chombo, who is also the Local Government, Rural Housing and Urban Development minister — was one of the high-ranking officials who attended the burial alongside Information and Publicity minister Webster Shamu.
Former Dynamos chairmen Ignatius Pamire and Philip Mugadza attended the burial. So did other members of the board of directors. The Premier Soccer League (PSL), Zifa and officials from various clubs were represented. Businessman Philip Chiyangwa attended the burial.
Shamu, the Dynamos patron, gave a moving eulogy.
“We bid farewell to one of the most prominent and selfless sons of Dynamos Football Club; a man who was there when the club was formed in 1963; a man the club has tragically lost when the ‘Glamour Boys’ are on the verge of celebrating the 50th anniversary of the founding of one of the country’s most popular clubs.
“He passed away less than two months before DeMbare celebrate half a century of existence. His passing on is all the more tragic as the club is on the verge of clinching the league championship and the Mbada Diamond Cup, the premier knock-out soccer competition in the country.
“We, in the Dynamos family, are shocked that we have lost our leader when the club is enjoying stability and good form in the local league and cup competitions. Chairman Chiminya will not be there to celebrate and enjoy the fruits of his toil.
“Leadership is one quality which was evident in him as he led Dynamos Football Club in his capacity as the chairman of the club’s board of directors. He was a celebrated great leader who was also an exceptional and innovative thinker, whose religious dedication to the club and soccer had very few equals,” Shamu said.
Chombo thanked AMC director Ray Kaukonde for the support at the funeral. Chiminya was employed by AMC at the time of his death.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have given their support. AMC and the Dynamos executive worked together and bought the coffin. I also want to thank the Roman Catholic Church members for their help from day one,” said Chombo.
Dynamos supporters’ chairman Felix Dzukwa said they were pained by the death of their chairman whom he described as an industrious man who helped to unite the executive, supporters and the board.