Most likely I will die first: Editor Godwin Muzari who hanged himself shocked Herald reporter


A few years ago, I came across a newspaper and as always, I skipped to my favourite section, the Arts& Entertainment.

My attention was instantly grabbed by a headline that read, “I experimented with women, says Aaron Chiundura-Moyo”.

The story was about how the prolific novelist and actor Chiundara-Moyo would date women and use that experience as inspiration for his novels.

The article intrigued me and I thought to myself, “what a brilliant writer”. I of course checked the byline and it said Godwin Muzari.

By then, I didn’t know him and I never thought I was ever going to meet him.

Fast forward to years later, I found myself as an entertainment reporter at The Herald and Muzari was my editor.

Working with him was the best experience and everyone who has worked with him can testify.

He was a cool, calm person but you didn’t want to cross his tracks.

When it came to submitting our story ideas, he would keep a straight face, the one that says I mean business only and if you didn’t have an impressive contribution, he always said “ndomafunnies iwayo, ndipei madiary ane musoro”.

Somehow he could strike a perfect balance. He was the kind of a boss you would joke around with, but could aslo be firm with you at the same time.

He loved Leonard Dembo.

He is the reason I know some of Dembo’s songs because every Sunday he would sit on his desk and play all his songs while he edited stories.

He would sing along too with his discord, which was very hilarious.

His writing skills were exceptional! I always looked forward to his column “Memory Lane” in which he wrote about yesteryear musicians.

My favourite memory of Godwin is when I accompanied him to Chiundura-Moyo’s house in Glen View for an interview.

He always joked that I was his assistant and I would write while he interviewed people. Chiundura-Moyo was a very talkative person so the interview was all over the place.

Personally, I didn’t even know the angle he was going to take with the story but the next day, a headline that read “The woman who broke Aaron Chiundura-Moyo’s heart” dominated the internet.

I asked him “How did you get all that from that interview?”

He laughed and told me that a good reporter should always have an eye for ground-breaking stories.

He was my mentor and I always told him that If I could only be half the writer he was, I would be happy.

Mentoring was definitely his calling. He was patient and he loved moulding students into future journalists.

We all went to him for advice and he always said, “It may not be much, but I want to contribute something to your careers that you will always remember me for”. And he did!

I remember when our desk correspondent Sophie Chese passed away.

He was really touched. See, Godwin loved his reporters and he treated them like his own children.

We called him Sir!

He wrote a very moving obituary for Sophie so much that I told him I wanted him to write mine too when I die, but his response was shocking.

“What makes you think you’re going to die before me? Most likely I will die first and you will have to write my obituary”.

I didn’t take that seriously until today. My heart is heavy and I can’t believe that you are gone but I wanted to fulfil your wish. Only God knows what you were battling and it is sad that it had to come to this. Thank you for everything you taught us. You made a great impact with your legendary articles.

His article headlined “The sad story of Leonard Dembo’s mother” attracted many people who donated to the late singer’s mother.

Muzari changed her life just by using the power of his words. That’s how powerful your words were.

You will be greatly missed!

— Herald

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