Mumbengegwi taken ill

FORMER Finance minister Samuel Mumbengegwi has been admitted into the intensive care unit at a private hospital in Harare for the past three weeks over an undisclosed ailment, NewsDay has learnt.


Matuke Lovemore

Mumbengegwi — brother of Foreign Affairs minister Simbarashe — left active politics after losing his Chivi North parliamentary seat in 2008, and became a lecturer at the Great Zimbabwe University in Masvingo.

Zanu PF parliamentary chief whip and Gutu Central MP, Lovemore Matuke, confirmed Mumbengegwi’s ill health yesterday, but said he did not have the finer details.

“I was told that he has been hospitalised . . . I don’t know the extent of the illness and what is affecting him,” he said.

The former Zanu PF Masvingo provincial chairperson held several Cabinet portfolios, including that of Higher and Tertiary Education, before he went into political oblivion.

Last Tuesday, NewsDay met some of Mumbengegwi’s relatives at a private health centre in the capital, where he is admitted.

These include Willia Bonyongwe, wife of Central Intelligence Organisation director, Happyton, who is said to be Mumbengegwi’s sister-in-law.

In 2002, when he was Higher Education minister, Mumbengegwi was slammed by rights groups after he attempted to introduce a compulsory conscription plan, where graduates from tertiary educational institutions would only be given certificates after completing national youth service training.

In 2007, Mumbengegwi took over as Finance minister from Herbert Murerwa following a Cabinet reshuffle.

In the run-up to the 2008 polls, Mumbengegwi lost in the Zanu PF primary elections, and eventually bade farewell to active politics after the ruling party forbade him from standing as an independent candidate.

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