Nyamubaya is no more

July 9, 2015 OPINION/NEWS




Constance van Niekerk

Barely two weeks after the passing of Hohodza Band’s Mbira player, musician and composer Simba Mudzingwa, Zimbabwe’s Arts have suffered yet another blow. Freedom Tichaona Nyamubaya is no more. She is reported to have collapsed at her farm in Mhangura and was rushed to hospital where she passed away on Sunday 5th of July, the same day South Africa’s mbaqanga group Soul Brothers lost their lead singer and co-founder David Masondo. Freedom was 55-years-old.

She joined the liberation struggle in 1975 after finishing her form two. Before joining the war she wrote a book, ‘Tambudzai’. Whilst imprisoned during the war she carried on writing poetry and songs. She was a published poet, a prolific writer and a rural development activist. In addition to this she founded an NGO, MOSTRUD  (Management Outreach Training Services for Rural Development). One of the things MOSTRUD does is to develop and nurture talent in youths in rural areas in a bid to curb prostitution and poverty.

‘On the Road Again’ is Freedom’s first anthology. It was published by Zimbabwe Publishing House (ZPH) in 1985. Ten years later in 1995, her second anthology ‘Dusk of Dawn’ was published by the College Press.


Extracts from Dusk of Dawn:




Amai *I wanted to write you a letter to say;

I now can speak many languages

Chipo is at Osthisa pregnant

Theresa is now a commander

Anna lost her leg In the battle

They beat me the first day I arrived at Tembwe

I was raped by the security commander

Jim lost his big toe from the Jigger fleas

Many died at Nyadzonya from hunger

I have got a new Afrikan name now

You probably know about all these things

Last but not least I wanted to tell you

That I love you very much.




A Different Kind of Love


Some people loved this country so much

That they died for it

Their skeletons are scattered all over Zimbabwe

The skeletons are still dying for this country

As they turn into useful manure

The survivors do not seem to love

this country at all


Zimbabwe is dying

On their behalf

Who loves Zimbabwe to save it from dying for us?


Nyamubaya is survived by her 19-year old son Naishe. Mourners are gathered at 9110 Ruwimbo Phase Two in Chinhoyi. She will be buried on Saturday at 2pm at her Mhangura farm.








Constance van Niekerk

Constance van Niekerk is a South-African based Zimbabwean-born freelance music critic, poet, photographer, educator, creative writer and blogger par excellence. She has written for The Southern Times Newspaper of Namibia as well as Zimbabwe’s foremost daily, The Herald, blogging also on Up Close and Personal with Zim Artists since 2012. Early in 2014 Constance rebranded the blog to L’Afrique Beat to reflect the interests the whole of Africa and create a continental flavour. L’ Afrique Beat features well researched and informative articles on Africa’s musical icons, entertainment, as well as the lifestyle issues of Africa.


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