via Shamuyarira dies | The Herald June 5, 2014 by Mabasa Sasa and Farirai Machivenyika
Former Zanu-PF Politburo member and ex-Cabinet minister Cde Nathan Shamuyarira has died. He was 85. Cde Shamuyarira died at West End Clinic in Harare last night after having been admitted on and off “for some time”. Zanu-PF commissar Cde Webster Shamu confirmed that the veteran nationalist had passed on, and referred The Herald to ruling party secretary for health Cde David Parirenyatwa for more details.
The two were among several party cadres, relatives, Government officials and colleagues at West End last night when Cde Shamuyarira breathed his last.
Cde Parirenyatwa, a medical doctor who is also Minister of Health and Child Care, said: “He passed on at around 22:30 after having been admitted on and off for some time. In the end, he had problems with a chest infection; he had been unwell for a while.”
Details of where mourners would gather could not be established at the time of writing as the death had just occurred.
Cde Shamuyarira left Government in 2000, saying he wanted to concentrate on his work in Zanu-PF, where he was secretary for information and publicity.
He then left active politics in 2010 to dedicate time to putting together a book on Zimbabwe’s liberation struggle and, more specifically, a memoir on President Mugabe’s central role in the Second Chimurenga.
In a 2011 interview with The Southern Times, President Mugabe expressed hope that the project would come to fruition before either he or Cde Shamuyarira passed on but that was not to be.
Born in 1929 to an evangelist of the Methodist Church, he attended the famed Waddilove Institute and qualified as a primary school teacher.
After leaving Waddilove he taught at various primary schools and used the time to complete his secondary education and then taught for some time at Tegwani School in Plumtree
From 1950-53 he taught animal husbandry at Domboshava and then in 1953 Cde Shamuyarira got a job as a cub reporter with African Newspapers Ltd.
He did well in his chosen profession and rose through the ranks to become the first black African editor of the Daily News in 1956.
From 1959 to 1962 he was editor-in-chief of African Newspapers Ltd, at which time he left journalism when late national hero Dr Samuel Parirenyatwa asked him to join Zapu, which was recruiting African intellectuals to spearhead the struggle for independence.
However, the colonial settler regime banned Zapu that same year and the party’s leader, the late Vice President Dr Joshua Nkomo asked him to join a delegation to the United Nations in new York even though he held no official position in the movement at the time.
On returning from that sojourn, he was appointed lecturer at the University College of Rhodesia and Nyasaland as a lecturer in Adult Education.
In 1963, he and other nationalists broke from ZAPU to form ZANU, and in September of the following year he left Southern Rhodesia to study Political Science at Princeton University in the United States – graduating in 1967.
After that he was appointed a lecturer at the University of Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania, where he doubled up as ZANU’s secretary for external affairs.
In 1970, he and Cde James Chikerema engaged in deliberations on unifying ZANU and ZAPU in Lusaka, Zambia, resulting in him resigning his lectureship to take up the post of treasurer for the new Front for the Liberation of Zimbabwe in 1971.
However, disagreements with leading lights of the struggle, such as Chairman Herbert Chitepo, saw him leave once again for the University of Dar in 1973.
At Independence in 1980 he joined government in charge of the information brief, a portfolio he was head again in the 1980s in between which he was Zimbabwe’s third Foreign Affairs Minister.