Charles Mungoshi set for critical op

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Charles Mungoshi

THE Mungoshi family has been left in awe by the response to their SOS for $9 000 to allow celebrated author, Charles Mungoshi, to undergo an urgent repeat medical operation after well-wishers poured in $12 100.

BY PHILLIP CHIDAVAENZI

Charles Mungoshi
Charles Mungoshi

Mungoshi’s son, Farai, told NewsDay yesterday that the money came in through individuals, the GoFundMe campaign, as well as another donor — who requested anonymity — who poured in a lump sum.

Farai said the medical procedure, which has to be done after it was realised that a shunt inserted by doctors at a government hospital to drain water from the 69-year-old author’s brain was dysfunctional, was critical because his father still had a lot to offer.

“The family is overwhelmed by the support shown by friends and family, too. This is something that has to be done because just from our day-to-day talks, it is easy to pick that mdhara (dad) still feels like he has more to offer and he wants to do just that, but he can’t do it in his present situation,” he said.

Farai said, while the family would not have wanted their father to go through the surgery, it was something that had to be done and they had trust in God for a clean bill of health after the procedure.

Jesesi’s sister, Fungisai Siggins, who is based in Australia, launched a GoFundMe campaign, as part of spirited fundraising efforts in partnership with ZimboJam, University of Zimbabwe lecturer Memory Chirere and others.

In April 2010, Mungoshi suffered a stroke, which nearly paralysed him and led him into a two-month-long comma.

The author published Branching Streams Flow in the Dark in 2013, bringing to 16 the total number of books he has published between 1970 and 2013, including novels, plays, short story and poetry collections in both Shona and English.

The 2017 edition of the National Arts Merit Awards (Nama) held last month were a bitter-sweet moment for the family, as Jesesi won the award for Outstanding Actress for her role in Muzita Rababa, while Farai scooped the gong in the Outstanding First Published Work with his debut short story collection, Behind the Wall Everywhere.

Mungoshi, who received an honorary doctorate Doctor of Letters degree from the University of Zimbabwe in 2003 in recognition of his contribution to Zimbabwe literature, has won several awards, including International PEN Awards (1975, 1981 and 1998), Noma Honourable Awards For Publishing in Africa (1980, 1984, 1990 and 1992), Commonwealth Writer’s Prize for Best Book in Africa (1988), seven awards at the Zimbabwe International Book Fair’s 75 Best Books in Zimbabwe for seven of his publications and the Nama Silver Jubilee Award (2006).

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