AMID a spike in Covid-19 infections and related deaths, President Mnangagwa has called upon the nation to continue observing the World Health Organisation (WHO) protocols as well as to embrace the free vaccination programme that has been availed by the Government to protect the populace.
In his condolence message on the death of Major General (Retired) Clever Shadreck Chiramba who succumbed to Covid-19 related illness at Parirenyatwa on Sunday, the President said the country should not drop its guard as the current third wave of the pandemic has resulted in a surge in infections countrywide as well as related deaths.
“The country continues to lose many lives to Covid-19 related illnesses in the wake of the Third Wave which the country is currently experiencing. Sadly, we have also lost our decorated soldier and veteran of the liberation struggle, the late Major General Chiramba under similar circumstances.
“The surest way of minimising further loss of lives and the spread of the deadly disease rests with all of us observing the stipulated WHO health protocols as well as strict adherence to the preventive measures which Government has put in place including the accelerated vaccination programme underway,” he said.
The country is currently under various levels of localised lockdowns as Government puts in place interventions to curb the spread of the contagion that has claimed thousands of lives on the continent and across the globe and disrupted lives and livelihoods.
Some of the WHO protocols include, washing hands, wearing face masks and social distancing.
The President, who is also the Commander in Chief of the Defence Forces, described Major General Chiramba as a distinguished Zimbabwean who served his nation with pride and honour.
“Major General Chiramba leaves a record of distinguished national service to Zimbabwe. He participated in the liberation struggle and served in the Zimbabwe National Army until his retirement from military service, both of these roles, he served with utmost dedication, commitment and unquestionable loyalty which earned him medals of honour, bravery, loyal service and excellence,” the President said.
After his retirement, Major General Chiramba went into farming, passionately and patriotically contributing to the country’s quest to achieve food self-sufficiency.
“On behalf of Government, the ruling party, Zanu PF, the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, my family, and indeed in my own behalf, I wish to express my heartfelt condolences to the Chiramba family, especially his wife Beatrice and the children, on their sad loss of a loving husband, father and mentor.
“May they rest assured that they are not alone during this dark hour of grief because Major General Chiramba was no longer theirs alone but belonged to all of us. May his dear soul rest in eternal peace,” said the President.
Born on February 2, 1955 in Chivi District in Gude village, Maj-Gen Chiramba did his primary education at Jenya Primary School from 1961 to 1968.
He left the village for Mashava where he did Ordinary Level through correspondence.
Maj-Gen Chiramba was to later join the liberation struggle, which led to the independence of the country in 1980.
He was later attested in the ZNA where he rose to become a Major-General until his retirement from active service in 2004.
Maj-Gen Chiramba led the Two Infantry Brigade during the DRC campaign under the auspices of the SADC Allied Forces.
The military intervention, which was code-named “Operation Sovereign Legitimacy” was meant to ward off rebels, secure the DRC territory, and to protect civilians.
In the war, combined African forces from DRC, Zimbabwe, Angola, South Africa and Namibia were pitted against Western sponsored insurgents from DRC and other elements.
The operation ultimately helped the country to regain its authority and sovereignty.
Burial arrangements for Maj-Gen Chiramba will be announced in due course.
Mourners are gathered at House Number 52, St Andrews Road, Hatfield, Harare.
He is survived by wife, Beatrice Chiramba nee Pawandiwa, eight children and 16 grandchildren.