FORMER Masvingo mayor Alderman Femias Chakabuda has died. He was 64.
BY TATENDA CHITAGU
Chakabuda collapsed while taking a bath at his Morningside home and was pronounced dead on arrival at Makurira Memorial Hospital yesterday morning, his wife Magret confirmed.
“He collapsed while taking a bath in the morning and we rushed him to hospital, where he was pronounced dead upon arrival,” she said.
Masvingo mayor Hubert Fidze said Chakabuda had been his mentor and was shattered by his death.
“The passing-on of the former mayor Alderman Femias Chakabuda is very sad for Masvingo City and the MDC-T family,” he said.
“This is indeed a great loss. Personally, he made me to be what I am in this office. He was the power and strength behind me. I always sought advice from him.
“Politically, he had been in and seen it all. A Christian par excellence, one who could be with the community at any time he was needed. We are going to miss you, chief mentor.”
Chakabuda, a war veteran, joined the liberation struggle in 1972 and was posted to Sierra Leone to mobilise resources for the struggle, where he obtained an accountancy degree. A successful businessman and farmer, he was elected councillor for Ward 5 in 1996 on a Zanu PF ticket.
In 2002, he crossed the floor and joined the opposition MDC and rose to the position of provincial treasurer.
In 2009, he became the mayor of Masvingo and was the president of the Urban Councils Association of Zimbabwe until 2013.
He did not contest the 2013 elections as he had taken a break from active politics.
He is survived by his wife and four children. Burial arrangements are yet to be announced. Chakabuda’s death comes two days after the death of Bulawayo town clerk Middleton Nyoni.
Meanwhile, the Nyoni family yesterday said it was consulting with Bulawayo City Council on funeral arrangements and an announcement would be made in due course.