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    Wednesday, 11 September 2019

    Chivi freedom fighter dies



    TATENDA CHIZU
    SENIOR REPORTER
    CHIVI- One of the pioneers of the liberation struggle in Chivi,

    Bernard Takawira  Gatawa  of Gwirai Village under Chief Watungwa is no more, a close relative Elfas Runoenda has confirmed to The Mirror.
    Gatawa who was also known as Matiki was born in 1938 and died on 16 July 2019 at Masvingo Provincial Hospital.
    Matiki was buried at his rural homestead in Gwirai Village where hundreds of people from all walks of life converged to pay their last respects
    He went to Bvute Primary School in Chivi up to standard six and went on to teach at several schools in the Beatrice area near Harare.
    He was later banished by the colonial Government from the rural areas for influencing villagers through his popular revolutionary songs and then relocated to Harare where he joined Dairiboard.
    He did not last at Dairiboard as he was dismissed for participating in politics and inciting workers.
    He was popular during the war of liberation and operated from Mafikeni Base in Chigwikwi under Chief Watungwa. Matiki also took care of freedom fighters in his area by providing food, clothes and important information. He worked alongside Cde Chapungu, Cde Darlington, Cde Maths One and Cde Bigie Hondo.
    In 1980 Gatawa was elected as the first Zanu PF and Zimbabwe Liberation War Collaborators chairman for ward 4 and was very instrumental in the establishment of Chigwikwi Clinic in 1984, Rutedzo Primary in 1985 and was SDC chairman for Chigwikwi Primary for a very long time.
    He also participated in the empowerment of villagers through the Heifer International concept of Mombe Kuvanhu and oversaw the establishment of a number business centres in the ward.
    His family described him as a unifier who fought difficult battles to raise his family.
    He is survived with his wife Vongai Takawira, nine children and several grandchildren.

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