Liberation war fighter Pswarayi dies


FORMER freedom fighter and medical doctor Edward Munatsireyi Pswarayi has died. He was 88.

Feluna Nleya
Staff Reporter

Pswarayi died at his Beatrice farm on Sunday after being ill for some time.

Family spokesperson Nathaniel Pswarayi confirmed the death, adding that his uncle had been in and out of hospital since the beginning of the year.

“He passed on yesterday (Sunday) at his farm. He had been unwell for some time being in and out of hospital this year,” Nathaniel, who is also a medical
practitioner, said, adding that they had since requested that he be declared a national hero considering the role he played during and after the liberation war.

Zanu PF Harare provincial chairman Amos Midzi also confirmed the death, saying they were seized with the matter and would also forward their request to the party politburo for consideration.

“We are currently meeting over the issue of his death, you can call me after an hour for finer details,” Midzi said.

But Mudzi was unreachable until the time of going to print last night. Pswarayi worked together with several nationalists among them President Robert Mugabe, the late James Chikerema, Herbert Chitepo and Samuel Parirenyatwa.

He contributed to the struggle using his personal resources including his vehicle to transport the late then Zapu president Joshua Nkomo, among other liberation struggle icons.

Pswarayi was one of those who remained in Zimbabwe and as chairman of the People’s Movement, he was critical in the clandestine operational functions of Zanu.

His house in Mbare was raided in September 1978 by the Rhodesian security forces, leading to his arrest and detention at Chikurubi, Harare and Whawha prisons.

Pswarayi was released in 1979 and joined the Zanu PF delegation in London to draw the Lancaster House Constitution.

After independence, Pswarayi was elected Zanu PF MP for Mbare and served as Deputy Minister of Transport and later as Deputy Minister of Health.

He is survived by his wife Mabel, 19 children, 37 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.


  1. 19 children guys ? This man ws terrible with one wife or , why is it that he requested to be regarded as a hero maybe the zanus had started their habit of scratching other war heroes nway rip comrade hope they will hear yo suplication of wanting 2 be laid at the heroes acre

    • he didnt ask to be declared a national hero at all, where in the article does it say Dr Pswarayi has asked to be declared a national hero, thats why you failed in school because you dont read and understand

      • @Pswarayi iwe ndiwe dofo and hauna brain.the late did not personally requested for national hero status but through his relatives quoted as Nathaniel,they have forwarded their request to zanu pf and midzi is aware of that.saka dofo ndiwe usingagone ku verenga.go back to grade 3.

  2. 19 children. Medical doctor. Mugabe another platform to scold Jonathan Moyo. VaMugabe mazuva ano vavakutonga vari kuheroes acre.
    Instead of Mugabe to console the believed family you shall hear him shouting at Jonathan Moyo. Talking irrelevant politics which is a good sign that he is now too old for the job. RIP Doctor.

  3. You are being shocked with this one with only 19 ,ko vamwe vakuru vakangonzib SEVERAL CHILDREN WANI vakaitwa national Hero

  4. Toto gara tiri paHeroes Acre, Masoja achanzwa nekufora gore rino. At the rate these heroes are dying the big Death/feast is coming sooner than later.

  5. nematambudziko kumhuri yasara, tinobatana ruzhinji rwe Zimbabwe kuvachema, may his soul rest in peace

  6. We all know the mere mention of Zanu Pf has peoples blood boiling and in a way its justifiable for reasons known to the person who feels strongly and who happens to have his blood boiling. Ive noticed something rather strange with Zimbabweans the amount of hate people have for characters they dont know is amazing, on all the people that commented above it was all to do with the number of children the Doctor has and yes its true I have 18 other siblings and will never be shy to say it.

    Dr Pswarayi was the second black african doctor in Zimbabwe after Dr Parirenyatwa, he became Zimbabwes first black doctor to venture into private practice, he served for seven years as Mbare MP and served as deputy in the transport and health portfolios, he retired from active politics in 1987 due to business committments,

    He played a pivotal role in liberating Zimbabwe and mind you he was at Lancaster House in 1979 after being released from prison, now if anything or if your memory serves you right I bet you hadnt heard about him until you read this article and that is testimony of the man I know.

    The anger you all have is just, but directed at the wrong people, we are all Zimbabweans but its not to say we are all the same (catch my drift) this guy gave all he had to free Zimbabwe and he did just that.

    Point of correction he didnt ask to be declared a National Hero, if anything I would rather he wasnt declared one at all. Judging by the mood people in this Country are in

  7. Yes 19 children obviously with several women.But some of them failed to have children Uhu ndiho ugamba hwaakasiyira zvematongerwo enyikaka uhu.So you thought it was only TSVANGISON to be declared a national hero for sleeping with women.? In ZANU PF we can never be out done by the clueless MT under whose nose we engaged NIkUV & won in July 2013. After all he only started this womanising game after the tragic loss of Susan.

  8. Edward Pswarayi was the first doctor to open a surgery in Machipisa, Highfield in the early 1960s. I was his patient at one point. Pswarayi was a very successful businessman. He owned Munatsireyi Petrol and Diesel Filling Station next to Mushandira Pamwe Hotel facing Gwanzura Stadium in Highfield. If a person was a businessman in Highfield back then the businessman had to contribute to the nationalists’ cause lest they were attacked by party thugs – much like the “protection fee” demanded by the criminal mafias around the world. On that one Pswarayi had no choice. Pswarayi went on to buy a farm like most successful black businessmen. I don’t know what other businesses he owned. I cannot see how he would have skipped the border to join Zanu because he was running very successful businesses in Salisbury. Black businessmen were caught between a rock and a hard place – they were caught between helping political parties clandestinely, being lawful citizens in the eyes of the white governments and running a successful businesses. The question is what exactly was Pswarayi unhappy with in Rhodesia because his businesses were very successful and expanding? You would surely want to maintain the status quo, wouldn’t you? Reluctant politician? Maybe.
    You can understand if it’s someone like Mugabe who had nothing and was hankering for political power.

  9. One sentence should read, “Black businessmen were caught between a rock and a hard place – they were caught between helping political parties clandestinely, being lawful citizens in the eyes of the white governments and running successful businesses”.

  10. His house was in Mbare, behind Harare Municipality housing dept offices in Rememberance Drive. He could not own a house in low density surburbs because of Land Tanure Act which segregated ownership of land/houses/immovable properties according to one’s skin and not the drivel preached by bambo musona of highfields. He also owned a house in Marimba Park, Mufakose. The late Dr Samuel Parerenyatwa also owned a house in Mbare, near Dr Pswarayi’s. Later a block of flats known as Charles Bricks was built for the well- off in the same neighbourhood, yes this was the low density surburb for the well-off Africans. This area is near Mbare Musika on the east, Chirodzo Primary School on the west and Harare High School on the south. Other areas for the well-off Africans were in Highfields and Marimba Park in Mufakose. Ndipopaudzwa musona oti tangatigere zvakanaka tichitongwa naSmith. Onashaya kutizvinombofamasei mumusoro wake.

    • R.I.P Gushungo, life will never be the same without you…To me you were a father, a caring one…Guys i have known this man since 2005…and for sure he was just a gentleman & a half and all that is talked about in history is what he exactly told me personally…We have been together till his last day and @ St Annes not farm as being reported…Go well, fambai zvakanaka Gushungo..Mashoko amaitiwudza taibata and please to the the remaining children please take care of mamma.and Tinashe..They are my warriors during Dr’s illeness….

    • RIP Dr.Pswarayi this man was a true legend and man of integrity in the class of men like Dr. Parirenyatwa. His house near Charles Briggs court was built for white or European Municipality workers and then when the whites were moved the houses were then occupied by well-off Blacks. He played a pivotal role in liberating Zimbabwe. To be declared a national Hero or not is not very important to people who knew Dr.Pswarayi, but I personally knew him for many years.

  11. Yes during those days Mbare was a clean township. Infact Mbare was not over populated as it is today. I used to enjoy leaving in Mbare. Yes I personally agree with whoever said during the days of Smith life was good. Yes it was very good. Management of towns during Smith regime was excellent unlike these days when Chombo is busy enriching himself with the few elite party members.

  12. @ Gandanga – Idiot. Why is it that you want me to say I was unhappy and that many people were unhappy in Rhodesia when I was very very happy and the people, I lived with and those I met were all happy? Unhappy about what? Bars were always full especially weekends. Stadiums were full of happy people watching football on Sundays. This was the second best economy in Africa by the way. I miss the days under white rule.
    Even Mugabe was happy because he brought Sally from Ghana to hold the wedding ceremony in Highfield. Newspaper archives have got pictures of a very happy Mugabe getting married in Highfield.

    To start with Pswarayi got a house to rent in Mbare in the 1960s because he was working for the S Rhodesia government before he went into private practice. At the time it is fair to say he did not have enough money to build or buy a house of his own after just having qualified as a doctor in S Africa. This is how he came to live in Mbare.
    Secondly, his University fees were paid by whites. And it was expensive.
    Thirdly, Pswarayi could not have dared live in a low density or white suburb back in the 1960s to early 1970s because he would have been seen by other black people, including nationalists, as a sell-out. If you were black you had to be seen to be with the others. All nationalists were given houses to rent by the whites in Highfield and some in Mbare. People like Nkomo, Ndabaningi Sithole, Muzorewa had enough money to buy houses in the white suburbs but wanted to be seen living in Highfield with the mas*es. Marimba Park was OK for affluent blacks. Those with money went were other blacks were staying.
    Fourthly, who told you Pswarayi was unhappy because he wanted to live in the white suburbs?

    I had money to buy my own house around the mid-1970s but I was hesitating because I would have been lonely there. I only bought my house in the suburbs in 1978 after seeing others doing so.

    The Land Tenure Act and Land Apportionment Act were paper laws which were very difficult to put into practice. Pswarayi bought a farm in Rhodesia. The first black multi-millionaire, George Tavengwa, had 9 commercial farms which he bought from white farmers. Many black businessmen bought farms in Rhodesia. Some blacks sent their kids to white schools in Rhodesia – examples, Kelvin Sifelani, Albert Chanetsa, Arthur Mutsonziwa, the late Sandra Mungwira nee Mwamuka, the ex-Ambas*ador to Australia, Jacqueline Zwambila, was educated in an all-white school in Bulawayo in Rhodesia.

    Where were these Acts when blacks were buying farms in Rhodesia and sending their kids to white schools?

  13. Kufa kufa chete. Whether you are buried pa we-evils acre or mudhamhu it does not change anything. We all wait for the resurrection the difference to be noted after the judgement day. Foolish rugare rwepasi pano runenge rwapera.

  14. @musona. Kelvin Sefelani is less than fifty years old and take off thirty four years of independence leaves him going to school after independence. After independence, all areas and facilities were opened up for all races and not few individuals you seem proud to mention their names. This is what the struggle was about. The bars and stadiums were for blacks in high density areas

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