Fidelis Munyoro Senior Reporter
President Mnangagwa yesterday paid his condolences to the Rushwaya family following the death of Gogo Mary Rushwaya. Gogo Rushwaya, mother to Defence Secretary Mr Martin Rushwaya, died at the Avenues Clinic in Harare yesterday. She was 72. President Mnangagwa was accompanied by his two Vice Presidents — Constantino Chiwenga and Kembo Mohadi — Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Dr Misheck Sibanda, service chiefs and other high-ranking Government officials.
President Mnangagwa spoke glowingly of the late Gogo Rushwaya, describing her as the finest among her generation and an oasis of wisdom to the family and said the nation had lost dearly.
“I have come here to convey my deepest condolences and commiserate with you on this sad day,” he said.
“She was a humble measured woman. She was an educationist who spend 42 years in the teaching profession serving with devotion, compassion, and humility.”
President Mnangagwa said Gogo Rushwaya, with whom he was also related, was a Christian and jovial person who liked to teach her family values of life and moral uprightness all the time.
“It is our tradition and culture that the elderly in families should be taken care of and respected because they are reservoirs of wisdom and knowledge,” he said.
“We learn many things from them and they give us guidance.”
During this time of mourning, the President implored the family and relatives to continue praying for Gogo Rushwaya’s soul and praising the Lord, celebrating the life of the family’s icon.
Family spokesperson Mr Sam Rushwaya thanked President Mnangagwa for taking his time to visit the family to pay his condolences.
He said: “I would want to thank you on behalf of the family for taking your time to be with us during this trying time. You have shown us your love and humility. We are grateful.”
Mr Martin Rushwaya described his mother as a paragon of virtue, who was loved by many.
Mr Rushwaya also said on the day a Zimbabwe National Army helicopter, in which he was a passenger forced landed in the Muchakazi area in Bikita after it developed a fault while airborne, her mother’s condition had deteriorated.
“We were on an official business trip and wanted to return to Harare on time to catch the evening visit at Avenues Clinic where my mother was admitted when the mishap occurred.”
“My mother was a teacher by profession.
“She was a loving mother, disciplinarian who feared God,” he said.
“She taught us Christian values. As a family we shall for ever treasure her legacy.”
Ms Henrietta Rushwaya paid tribute to her aunt saying she was a woman of valour and a pillar of strength in the family.
She said the void she has left will be difficult to fill.
Today a memorial service for Gogo Rushwaya will be held at 10am at One Commando Barracks before the body is taken to the family plot in Hurban Park, Gweru.
The body will lie in State at the plot and on Sunday the body will be returned to Harare, where it will lie in state ahead of the burial on Monday at Glen Forest.
Mourners are gathered at Number 4 Glen Lorne Drive, in Glen Lorne.