THE late prolific writer Chenjerai Hove’s family yesterday said efforts were still underway to have the body repatriated to Zimbabwe for burial.
BY ARTS REPORTER
Family spokesperson Ray Mawerera implored the media to bear with them as they will not grant interviews.
“We are currently in the process of repatriating his body for burial in Zimbabwe.
“Details on the burial arrangements will be provided in due course, once all processes have been finalised. In the meantime – while we are busying ourselves with these processes – we kindly ask members of the media to please bear with us as we shall not be available to give interviews,” he said.
Mawerera’s statement came as the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) yesterday described Hove’s death as “a blow” to the country’s arts sector as condolence messages kept pouring in following the self-exiled author and poet’s death in Oslo, Norway, last Sunday.
NACZ communications and marketing officer Cathrine Mthombeni said the council would always cherish Hove’s contributions to the country’s arts sector.
“Hove was a prolific writer who not only wrote novels, but also had anthologies whose expressions were evident that indeed he was a talented, passionate and devoted writer,” she said.
She noted that the award-winning author’s contribution to Zimbabwe’s literature was immense in view of how several of his works were part of the country’s schools literature setbooks.
“Chenjerai’s ideas which he expressed through his works are captivating and motivational to an extent that some of his novels and poems are Literature set books for Ordinary and Advanced Level students.
Hove’s publications include Bones (1988), Shadows (1991) and an anthology And Now the Poets Speak (1981),” she said.
She added that the NACZ would always cherish his contributions in promoting and developing the sector.
Hove is survived by his wife and six children and the family is making arrangements to bring his body back home for burial.
An analyst Alex Magaisa has also expressed his sadness at the pro-democracy writer’s death, describing it as “a great loss for the country” and to those who had been under his tutelage.
“He was one of my literary heroes and I grew up hoping to write like him, (Charles) Mungoshi and others,” Magaisa was quoted saying. “So when he started to write and address me as if I were his peer, it was deeply humbling.
“But, of course, Chenjerai meant a lot more to me and others who grew up on his books – he wrote beautifully and had an authentic voice. In all our communications, you could see he was painfully attached to his country of birth.”
Spoken word artist and poetry and project co-ordinator at Aame Creations, Barbra Breeze Anderson, said: “Rest in peace dear writer, I’m saddened by his passing and our constant loss of great writers as a nation.”
Zimbabwe Association of Theatre for Children and Young People (ZATCYP) national director Washington Masenda described Hove as “a legend”.
“We would like to express our deepest condolences on the passing on of our legend and creative writer, Chenjerai Hove,” he said.