Pamela Shumba/Thupeyo Muleya, Chronicle Reporters
FORMER Home Affairs Deputy Minister and Mangwe MP Cde Obedingwa Mguni has died.
Cde Mguni, who was also the Zanu-PF deputy chief whip and the party’s Matabeleland South provincial treasurer, died at West End Clinic in Harare after a short illness on Tuesday.
He was 57.
The Speaker of Parliament Advocate Jacob Mudenda yesterday said Cde Mguni started coughing while attending Parliament and was rushed to hospital where he later died.
“He was in Parliament yesterday (Tuesday) and he was looking fit indeed and conducting his duties as usual as the deputy chief whip for Zanu-PF. He suddenly started coughing and he was rushed to West End Clinic where he later died,” said Adv Mudenda.
He said Cde Mguni was an active, hardworking, humble and responsible MP.
“He was a dependable MP who carried out many duties and was always willing to listen to other people. His major duty was deputy chief whip, which he did well as he helped the chief whip MP Pupurai Togarepi,” said the Speaker.
“He was also an active member of the SADC Parliamentary Forum headquartered in Windhoek, Namibia. Cde Mguni was the Home Affairs Deputy Minister at some point and he did exceptionally well in responding to questions on behalf of the Minister.”
Adv Mudenda said Parliament is waiting for advice from the family in terms of burial arrangements.
“I’m also not sure if the party will consider his status as well,” he said.
Zanu-PF national spokesperson and Senator for Bulilima Mangwe constituency Cde Simon Khaya Moyo said Cde Mguni’s death has left Zanu-PF and the people of Mangwe constituency in shock.
“As Senator for Bulilima Mangwe constituency, I feel part of my physical being has been ripped off. Cde Mguni died on duty as he had attended Parliament on Tuesday and had interacted with his colleagues in the usual, jovial positive and constructive manner.
“He was a committed, principled, and disciplined cadre of the revolution who was down to earth and a man of the people,” said Cde Khaya Moyo.
Zanu-PF, Cde Khaya Moyo added, had been robbed of an unflinching servant.
“Mangwe constituency has been left without a dependable representative and Zimbabwe is poorer by his absence. In wishing his wife and family strength and staying power, may his soul anchor and rest in eternal peace,” said Cde Khaya Moyo.
Zanu-PF Matabeleland South chairman, Cde Rabelani Choeni yesterday said the provincial leadership was yet to get more details on the cause of death.
He said they were working with party structures in compiling his obituary to forward to the national party office for further action.
“We are still working on preliminary issues and getting the necessary information to apply for the necessary hero’s status. He was a member of the provincial executive and we will decide with others what status we will apply for but definitely it’s from provincial hero up,” said Cde Choeni.
Cde Mguni’s wife Hlalani Cara said she was still in shock.
Cde Mguni did his primary education at Matole and Silima primary schools in Plumtree and Regina Mundi.
He went to Empandeni Secondary School in Plumtree and, Matope, and Mkushi in Zambia.
Cde Mguni joined the liberation struggle at the age of 15.
In 1976, he went to Zambia and completed his lower sixth at Mkushi College before going to Libya for military training.
In 1980, he left army integration and joined teaching until 1986 before he went to South Africa where he worked for the South African government.
He has been a businessman since 2005. He is survived by his wife, Hlalani and three children.
Burial arrangements will be announced in due course.