Tributes pour in for Cde Chinx

Zimbabwe Defence Forces commander General Constantino Guveya Chiwenga consoles Mrs Ronia Mombe, mother to Cde Dickson “Chinx” Chingaira, at her son’s Mabelreign home in Harare yesterday. —(Picture by Munyaradzi Chamalimba)

Zimbabwe Defence Forces commander General Constantino Guveya Chiwenga consoles Mrs Ronia Mombe, mother to Cde Dickson “Chinx” Chingaira, at her son’s Mabelreign home in Harare yesterday. —(Picture by Munyaradzi Chamalimba)

Zvamaida Murwira Senior Reporter—
A CROSS-SECTION of Zimbabweans yesterday mourned renowned revolutionary musician and war veteran Cde Dickson Chingaira, as fellow musicians, liberation fighters, senior Government officials, friends and relatives thronged his residence in Mabelreign to commisserate with his family. Popularly known as Cde Chinx, the iconic musician succumbed to leaukemia at Harare’s West End Hospital on Friday evening and consultations on his hero status were underway by late yesterday.


His residence was a hive of activity as people from all walks of life converged to pay their respects.

Zanu-PF Secretary for Information and Publicity Cde Simon Khaya Moyo said in a statement that Cde Chinx’s death had robbed his family, Zanu-PF and Zimbabwe at large of a talented, versatile personality whose songs were a tonic to cadres during the liberation struggle and after independence.

Through song, Cde Chinx also helped champion the Third Chimurenga (Hondo Yeminda).

“Like the late Give Nare who was the Light Machine Gun (LMG) choir master in Zapu during the liberation struggle and after independence, their songs are now part of our liberation struggle and lasting legacy,” said Cde Khaya Moyo.

“Their songs stimulated both Zanla and Zipra fighters into action and helped mobilise the masses into an incredible resistant population.

“Cde Chinx, in particular, performed at independence celebrations and at State occasions until he fell ill and breathed his last. The party will miss you Cde Chinx, but your songs like those composed by your friend the late Cde Nare live forever. You were a true patriot and the youths must learn from your exemplary life and contribution to this free nation,” Cde Khaya Moyo said.

Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Dr Christopher Mushohwe said Cde Chinx was among a rare breed of cadres who joined the struggle at a tender age.

He said Cde Chinx played a critical role in the revolution through his music, which served to mobilise and spur on freedom fighters and the people in the war against the racist Rhodesian regime.

“Cde Chinx was one of the few comrades alongside Cde Mhere and Cde Murehwa who had a talent to sing,” said Dr Mushohwe. “He was among the best crop of singers and composed such songs as ‘Maruza Imi Vapambepfumi’, among others which inspired freedom fighters.”

Dr Mushohwe said after independence, Cde Chinx’s songs encompassed pan-African values advocating unity among Africans.

“When the Government embarked on the land reform programme in 2000, Cde Chinx was one of the few musicians to embrace the struggle for land through music in songs contained in the ‘Hondo Yeminda Volume 1 and 2’ albums which he did with the Police Band,” he said.

“This was at a difficult time when many artistes began demonising the Government through their works, but Cde Chinx stood for the revolution.”

Zimbabwe Defence Forces Commander General Constantino Guveya Nyikadzino Chiwenga and Secretary for Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Mr George Charamba were among high-profile personalities who attended the funeral wake yesterday.

Addressing mourners, Gen Chiwenga said while many people knew that Cde Chinx was unwell, everyone hoped that he would recover.

“Even when he went to hospital, we know that the purpose of that visit was to have his catheter changed,” Gen Chiwenga said.

He said Cde Chinx’s music inspired many young people to join the liberation struggle.

“The biggest work that he carried out was outside the country during the liberation struggle when he showed his singing talent,” said Gen Chiwenga.

“Everyone knew his voice although they might have not known the physical person. His songs strengthened people and clearly demonstrated how evil whites were.”

After independence, said Gen Chiwenga, Cde Chinx was attested into the Zimbabwe National Army Presidential Guard, but requested that he be allowed to leave the army to continue with his musical career.

Speaking at the same occasion, Mr Charamba paid tribute to the Zimbabwe Defence Forces for deploying medical personnel to assist Cde Chinx during his illness.

He said the Premier Service Medical Aid Society played a significant role in attending to Cde Chinx through its West End Hospital.

“CDF Gen Chiwenga deployed medical doctors from the ZDF and they did their best to assist Cde Chinx,” said Mr Charamba. “There is a lot that the medical corps did to support him. I was a link person between the family and the army.”

Mr Charamba said he was so close to Cde Chinx that the musician would come to his office without appointment, particularly when his health continued to deteriorate.

He said Cde Chinx visited him three times and he would link him up with Gen Chiwenga to explore ways of assisting him.

Cde Charamba said he valued a lot of Cde Chinx’s musical lyrics that he would use some of them in his Saturday Herald column known as Nathaniel Manheru The Other Side.

“Many people have been wondering and asking who is Nathaniel Manheru,” he said. “It is me George Charamba and I would quote several of his songs in my column.”

Government, said Mr Charamba, took a deliberate decision to support musicians through organising musical galas.

“The reason for including Chinx in these galas was that young musicians would want to emulate Americans, yet Cde Chinx’s message would be rooted in our revolution,” he said.

He paid tribute to Zimbabwe Music Awards chairperson Mr Joseph Nyadzayo for honouring Cde Chinx’s work by constructing and donating the house in Mabelreign.

Mr Charamba said plans were under- way to publish some of the work they did with Cde Chinx.

He paid tribute to fellow musicians who attended yesterday’s funeral wake among them Zexie Manatsa, Nicholas Zakaria, Fred Zindi and Isaac Chirwa.

Zanu-PF Harare provincial commissar Cde Shadreck Mashayamombe yesterday said they were still waiting for a response from the Zanu-PF leadership on their request for national hero status for Cde Chinx.

“The leadership is still in the process of enquiring,” he said. “As a province, we are still waiting. We expect the response tomorrow (today).”

Zanu-PF National Secretary for Administration Cde Ignatius Chombo, to whom the province addressed the letter, could not be reached yesterday.

Cde Chinx is survived by two wives, Patricia Makoni and Ntombizodwa Mangota, and 10 children.

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  • Ndini Ndadaro

    Finally; finally & Finally! Thank you Cde Charamba for revealing who Nathaniel Manheru is. Some were trying to gain some political mileage from telling the nation who Nathaniel Manheru is.

    • Zvobgo

      what political mileage mileage does George bring?

  • Kubatana

    Uyu itori national hero. Mukasazviona izvozvo munenge matadza

  • chirandu wekuzaka

    RIP cde , go well son of the soil

  • April 18

    The late Cdes.Nare and Chinx were against a system that hoarded wealth in a few hands at the expense of a majority who had been robbed of their nationhood and heritage.The befitting tribute that can be restored to these late brave cadres is to uphold equity,justice hence economically empower the people of this great country without fear or favour.There was weeping and gnashing of teeth when a cruel system violently dispossessed the majority people of their heritage and such imbalances must be addressed as a lasting legacy to posterity.RIP Cdes .Nare and Chinx.

  • Eish

    Pse Guvheya can you assist in getting this gallant son be declared a national hero.

  • Sadombo

    RIP cde Chinx

  • Sekuru Wanguda

    Anopinda denga uyu by virture of supporting ZANU PF according to Chipanga the lunatic

  • Cde Jairos Tapfuma

    RIP mumwe wedu . . .

    • Zvobgo

      mumwe wenyu, kwete wedu

  • Cde Simba Rashe

    Despeakable is an understatement. Making Chinx’s legacy a ZANU PF jingle when the entire ZANU PF voided him the benefits of such gallantry during his lifetime. For the record, the house they claim to have been donated by Nyadzayo and Grace (forced-Amai), thats theory is a lie. Chinx lived a Zimbabwean as being mourned by Zimbabwe not this ZanuPF nonsense wasting space on the National Media as such.

  • Mdhara

    Cde makaimba Gedye yaramba after ESAP. Nanhasi Gedye iri kungoramba. RIP Mukoma Dikisoni

  • Mopao General Mbezo

    Despicable you meant to say….!!

  • Ndizvo

    If Cde Chinx is declared a National Hero so they must exhume Mr Nare and send him to Heroes Acre.

    • Zvobgo


  • kuchadziya

    Sorry Cde Chinx’s family. We had a good chat when we met a few years ago. The political commissar is gone. Pamosken – 3 months political orientation. You ran that program very well. And the choir pasi pomuti was excellent. Rest in peace komu.

  • WeZhira

    One thing that Zimbabweans may not know about Dicks Chingaira(Cde Chinx) is that in the 1985 elections when PF(ZAPU) people were being evicted from their homes and some were getting killed Cde Chinx saved the lives of many of these people. Some were targeted simply because they spoke Ndebele and Chinx stood up to the violence and called for unity against tyrany . To me just for that unifying action he is a Hero irrespective of what the “party” says

  • Zvobgo

    When he sees two people to him they should be described as thousands

  • Grace Jones

    aaaa zw yakaoma. Has anybody noticed how Khaya Moyo keeps bringing up the name of Give Nare every few sentences. This is Chinx death and he keeps dragging the name of Nare. What is his point? THat Nare should also get recognition or a pull down on Chinx . What is his point. How does a person go to another person’s funeral and cry for their own relative who died years ago? .

  • Zvobgo

    “Its actually a disgrace” as my uncle used to say