Bhebe family to finalise burial date Professor Ngwabi Mulunge Bhebe

Wallace Ruzvidzo-Herald Reporter

NATIONAL hero and founding Midlands State University (MSU) Vice Chancellor Professor Ngwabi Bhebe’s family will convene a meeting with Government today to finalise burial arrangements. 

Some family members including his children based abroad were expected to arrive in the country on Sunday.

Condolence messages continue to pour in for Prof Bhebe who died last Friday at the age of 81.

He was subsequently accorded national hero status in recognition of his immense contribution to the development of tertiary education in Zimbabwe as well as during the struggle for independence.

Permanent Secretary for Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage Ambassador Raphael Faranisi told The Herald last night that consultations with the family would be done today. 

Thereafter, Ambassador Faranisi said he would be able to divulge the full burial arrangements.

“I cannot at this stage confirm because we are yet to meet the family as the Ministry responsible for drawing up the programme then recommending.

“But we will be meeting them tomorrow (today),” he said.

“I can definitely confirm from an official point of view tomorrow. He will be sorely missed by our country’s community of researchers, and by the numerous PhD students he supervised as a Professor Emeritus at MSU, and before then, as a leading lecturer at the University of Zimbabwe.”

In his condolence message, President Mnangagwa said Prof Bhebe’s death had been a great loss to Zimbabwe’s academic fraternity.

“It spoke highly of him that the current top leadership of the Great Zimbabwe University, GZU, emerged from within his top staff at MSU. He advised Government on several Universities which now operate.

“On behalf of the party, Zanu PF, Government, my family and on my behalf, I wish to express my deepest, heartfelt condolences to the Bhebe Family on this their saddest loss. 

“May their pain be assuaged by the distinguished role the late departed played in founding key institutions of higher education, and in mounding several minds which today drive our nation from various echelons and in different capacities.”

Due to his passion and commitment to the preservation of Zimbabwe’s history and nation building, Prof Bhebe teamed up with colleagues to found the MSU and became its first Vice Chancellor.

In Gweru mourners are gathered at 266 Mutausi Park.

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