ZANU-PF Central Committee member for Midlands province, Cde Timothy Gandire-Mhuri, has died.
He was 88.
Cde Gandire-Mhuri succumbed to kidney failure at a private hospital in Borrowdale yesterday morning.
Midlands Central Committee member Cde Emmanuel Fundira said the provincial executive committee has since written to the Politburo requesting that he be declared a national hero.
“We have written to the party requesting national hero status for one of the pillars of the province who played a pivotal role during the liberation struggle,” said Cde Fundira.
He described Cde Gandire-Mhuri as a good listener and down-to-earth person who had an open-door policy.
“Those remaining in the province and party should continue uniting people, fighting for development and providing corrupt-free leadership, which he typified for more than 60 years.
“He provided good and mature leadership. He was the most senior both in the district and province. He was a source of wisdom and advice for the party.
“He remained committed to the party before and after independence,” he said.
Born in Shurugwi on October 2 1930, Cde Gandire-Mhuri did his primary and secondary education at Vugwi before training as a mechanic at Ndweleni Technical College in South Africa.
Upon his return, he joined Zanu-PF in 1952 and later moved to Zambia to open a transport business.
However, he remained devoted to the liberation struggle.
While in Zambia, he provided liberation fighters with accommodation and transportation and became a target of Zambian and Rhodesian colonial governments.
He worked with senior party leaders such as Herbert Chitepo, Enock Dumbutshena and President Mnangagwa.
Soon after independence, he returned from Zambia and was appointed a Central Committee member, a position he held until his death.
Mourners are gathered at the family farm in Gweru, with burial tentatively scheduled for Wednesday.
Cde Gandire-Mhuri is survived by seven children and eight grandchildren.