BUHERA SOUTH MP, Joseph Chinotimba has pledged to pay school fees for 24 poor pupils from Chinotimba Primary School in Victoria Falls until they complete Grade 7.
The 24 pupils are in different grades and are said to have had difficulties in paying fees.
Conservative estimates indicate the self-styled leader of land invasions in 2000, would be forking out $960 per term for the pupils who were chosen by the school administration.
Chinotimba, who has emerged as one of the most vibrant legislators in the National Assembly donated 1 000 litres of paint to the school.
He told Southern Eye he was inspired to adopt the children by the fact that the school was named after his great grandfather.
He claimed his great grandfather died in the area after arriving at the resort town with explorer David Livingstone in 1850s.
“It’s true. Iam not called Chinoz of Buhera South only. I am Chinoz for the whole country,” he said.
“It’s not going to be a small job for people of Chinotimba.
“A big job is coming. Besides paying school fees for those pupils I have also donated 1 000 litres of paint to refurbish the school.
“The paint is already there. It’s unfortunate that the MP (Bekithemba Mpofu) for the area had no transport to ferry it to Victoria Falls (from Harare), otherwise it could have gone there by now. But I am taking it there myself.”
He said he was honouring the people of Victoria Falls after Chinotimba suburb was named after his great grandfather.
“My great grandfather Chinotimba was the one who was driving the chariot in which David Livingstone was (travelling),” he said.
“When he arrived Livingstone settled in the rainforest while he was built a hut outside the Falls around Chinotimba suburb.
“The Tonga and Nambya people who were in the area are the ones who named the area Chinotimba’s dominion.
“People should not think that we come from that area. We don’t belong there. We originated from Mutambara area of Mutare and our forefathers moved to Masvingo.
“As they were moving in search of food Chinotimba came into contact with Livingstone who was in en route to Victoria Falls.”
Livingstone is said to have “discovered” Victoria Falls in 1855 after entering the country from Botswana.
From 1841 until his death in May 1873, Livingstone explored the interior of central and Southern Africa.
He died in Chief Chitambo’s village at Ilala southeast of Lake Bangweulu in present-day Zambia at the age of 60.
Chinotimba said he was appealing to the Victoria Falls municipality to allocate his clan a stand so that they could build a museum for people to learn about his great grandfather.
“Our elders made follow-ups after the death of Chinotimba, but the whites refused to show them his grave,” he said.
“However, we have since established that his grave is at Chinotimba Clinic.”